Congratulations on being featured in the Agents of Change Power List by Management Today, what does this mean to you?
I am honoured to be featured in this list for the second time. I have always believed that a person’s success is determined by their ability, hard work and potential, not by their gender. Therefore, I am proud to be in a position where I can highlight and promote the incredible work that our female workforce achieves.
Why do you think promoting gender parity in the workforce is important?
Diversity is the key to innovation. New ideas and perspectives drive success, and this cannot be achieved without inclusivity. One cannot expect to succeed in a global economy where half the population isn’t being included.
How has FDM achieved gender parity?
FDM has displayed gender parity from the get-go because I have always understood its importance. The FDM management team is made up of circa 50% women. Our business model is about attracting the best talent for the job, we don’t set out to fill quotas, it happens naturally, and we are very proud of that.
How do you think the gender pay gap conversation has changed/developed over the years?
Looking back over the last 20+ years it is evident that the conversation has come a long way, but still has a long way to go. Nowadays, it is rightly highlighted as unacceptable so there has been a shift, with further improvements on its way. At FDM we have reported a 0% median gender pay gap for two years in a row.
There is still a lot of work to do in the technology industry, but I am confident that with our Women in Tech initiative FDM will be able to attract more girls and women into a tech career to establish parity across the industry. This needs to start in schools by showing girls that there are opportunities within the technology sector for everyone.
Do you think the gender gap needs to be adjusted and monitored by Board Governance to suit modern needs?
Yes it does. Recruitment agencies are currently working with a very short list of senior female candidates. It can be an elitist process, which isn’t acceptable in this field. If you are a Lawyer, Accountant, or in a Public Company, around 55 years old and if you have benefited from private education in the past, you have a good chance of being on a board. This is too exclusive, the net needs to be widened in order to attract diversity.
Congratulations again Rod, a well-deserved nomination!