The proportion of women in top jobs in large public companies has increased slightly. The organization “Women in the Supervisory Boards” (FidAR) determined this in a study.
Accordingly, as of January 1, 2020, 22 percent of the top management levels of the companies were women – an increase of four percentage points compared to the previous year. In the supervisory bodies of the companies there was a slight increase from 1.4 percentage points to 32.2 percent.
22 percent women on the board of directors of public companies
This means that public companies continue to be on par with the private sector when it comes to filling supervisory board positions with women. The difference is greater when it comes to board positions: Compared to the 22 percent women in the top management level of public companies, only 11 percent women are represented in top positions in the private sector. The organization published its figures on private companies in June.
The 262 largest public companies in Germany were examined for the current study. Specifically, these are companies with federal or state participation, such as water companies, lottery, transport or housing companies or energy companies. Companies of a certain size – usually more than 2,000 employees – have had to fill vacant supervisory board positions with women since the beginning of 2016, until at least 30 percent of women have been reached.
No requirements for board members
There are currently no guidelines for filling board members. Family Minister Franziska Giffey (SPD) and Justice Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) had submitted a draft law, but it is on hold. According to Giffeys, there is no approval from the Union-led ministries. At the end of August, the coalition committee agreed to set up a working group to defuse the conflict.
According to FidAR, the momentum to increase the proportion of women in management positions in large public companies has “noticeably decreased”. 14 companies had a management floor completely free of women and of the 123 companies that actually had to set targets, 49 had not submitted any plans for increasing the proportion of women. FidAR President Monika Schulz-Strelow spoke of an alarm signal.
Giffey calls for more commitment
The public sector companies should lead by example, said Giffey on the occasion of the numbers. The goal is to achieve 50 percent women in management positions in the most important companies with federal participation by the end of 2025. “But that requires a lot more commitment. It is unacceptable that so many public companies publish little or no ambitious target figures. “
In a country comparison, the public companies in Berlin, Brandenburg and Hamburg are once again ahead in terms of filling management positions with women. As in the previous year, Bavaria, Saarland and Saxony are also behind. FidAR points out that in all countries of the top group there are guidelines for good corporate governance with corresponding recommendations for more fairness in the allocation of posts – in the countries of the bottom group, however, not or only recently.