TORONTO, Dec. 5, 2017 /CNW/ - PhaseNyne (parent company of Women's Executive Network - WXN, Canadian Board Diversity Council – CBDC, and Stevens Resource Group - SRG) released the eighth Annual Report Card (ARC), which reveals there has been progress when it comes to board diversity in Canada but the pace of change is moving at an almost static pace.
The 2017 ARC shows that women today occupy 22.6% of FP500 organization board seats – an increase of just 1 percentage point this year compared to last. For the two years following the Ontario Securities Commission's "Comply or Explain" mandate, the pace of change nearly doubled year-over-year, but 2017 produced the smallest increase in female representation since the ARC study started. This year's report also saw a decrease in visible minorities and people that identify as a LGBTQ serving on boards.
Paradoxically, the report reveals 94.4% of FP500 board directors believe the issue of board diversity is extremely important and 86% claim the board they serve on is diverse.
"It's clear we have more work to do. Canada's boardrooms should reflect the diversity of the Canadian workforce. The insights, expertise and perspectives garnered from a diverse membership can only strengthen the values behind the mission of all enterprises, whether small or large," says Sherri Stevens, President & CEO of PhaseNyne. "This year's ARC shows a sliver of growth from last year and emphasis a need for a greater sense of urgency to implement policies and create a faster rate of change."
"This year's ARC results paint a concerning picture," says Michael Bassett, Associate Director, Governance Compliance and Risk at The Conference Board of Canada, the organization that collects and analyzes research for the ARC. "Faster progress on gender diversity is needed if directors wish to avoid stronger regulatory responses."
Along with The Conference Board of Canada, the 2017 Annual Report Card is produced in association with KPMG LLP, BMO Financial Group, NATIONAL Public Relations, and National Post. "BMO Financial Group is proud to support the work of the Canadian Board Diversity Council to drive diversity on corporate boards," says Mona Malone, Chief Talent and Learning Officer. "We believe diversity in the boardroom, in senior leadership and across our community is a source of strength. We are proud that over 40% of independent Directors on the BMO board are female, and remain steadfast in our commitment and strong in our efforts to promote gender equity."
For more information about this year's Annual Report Card, please visit: http://notgoodenough2017.ca
PhaseNyne (parent company of Women's Executive Network - WXN, Canadian Board Diversity Council – CBDC, and Stevens Resource Group - SRG) provides the tools and resources to help corporate boards boost their diversity efforts, including the Diversity 50 list, which will be released in early 2018 and features a cohort of 50 diverse, qualified candidates ready for corporate board director appointments. Additionally, PhaseNyne's Get On Board Governance Education Program is designed to complement existing director education programs, equipping board-ready, high-potential diverse candidates with the tools to pursue board placement.
For further information: Sean Hemraj, Vice President, Business Development and Marketing, PhaseNyne, 416-361-1475 ext. 216, [email protected]