For the second year running, Transport for London (TfL) has been awarded the WTS London Employer of the Year Award for its commitment to gender diversity. The Award was launched by WTS in 2014 to recognise businesses that have shown the greatest support of women in the transport industry.
Presenting the Award, to Laily Thompson, HR Equality and Inclusion Lead at TfL, Katie Morrell, Vice-President of WTS London said. "The winner again this year is TfL, an organisation that continues to excel in not just gender diversity, but in diversity and inclusion across their business. In fact, they are so good and so far ahead of the field that we may have to ban them from entering next year!"
Just some of the initiatives that TfL have taken to support women are:
- A dedicated equality and diversity team promoting gender diversity programmes
- Leading maternity/paternity policies and encouragement of flexible working
- Piloting women on boards' membership.Thirty women joined 2015’s Springboard programme
- Inspire Engineering Workshops for over 100 pre-GCSE girls for National Women in Engineering week
- An unconscious bias film for use in recruitment
A Women’s Staff Network Group which this year has:
Developed a buddy scheme for staff with the Maternity Leave Working Group and partnered with pregnancy charity Tommy’s
Created the Menopause Working Group
It also launched the 100 Years of Women in Transport campaign which has:
- A network of over 8,500 members, over 270 organisations
- Set a Guinness World Record, rallying over 900 female engineers
- Held development and networking events including talks, debates and speed mentoring
- Established an industry wide networking scheme (coffee roulette)
- Launched teacher industrial partnership scheme
- Undertaken an intensive schools engagement campaign, including a debating competition at the House of Lords.
Accepting the Award, Laily said that she particularly wanted to thank the 100 Years of Women in Transport team who have contributed so much with their hugely successful campaign this year.
The runner-up Award was won by transport consultancy, Steer Davies Gleave (SDG). Presenting the award to SDG's Planning Director, Sharon Daly and HR Manager, Leo Wing, Katie said "It is encouraging to see smaller companies are also offering such fantastic support to women in developing their careers. SDG has demonstrated that size is not a challenge when it comes to gender diversity. They have beaten the Industry average of around 18 per cent to achieve 35 per cent representation of women across their business and that isn’t just in junior grades. They are setting the pace with 6 out of 14 business heads being women and 5 out of 7 corporate heads."
The SDG policy of flexible and/or part-time working encourages many women who are mothers to continue their career at SDG and initiatives such as enhanced maternity pay and 'keep in touch days' strengthen the support for working mums. Training, mentoring and career development is integral to the the company’s principles – and of the 11 female corporate or business heads, 9 initially joined in junior positions.