Lloyds gets closer to ‘40% women leadership by 2020’ target
- 2nd June 2014
- Women in Business
Lloyds Banking Group has hired a top female executive as it pushes towards its goal of increasing female representation in leadership roles.
The group has continued with its plans to hire more women in senior roles last week, after it announced the appointment of another top female executive.
Mary Hall will become the new group audit director at the firm, one of its most senior roles. She will also become the second most senior women in the organisation after Alison Brittain, who runs the bank’s retail side.
According to Sky News, Ms Hall will report directly to Nick Luff, chair of Lloyds’ audit committee, who is also the outgoing director of finance at Centrica. Crucially, the news provider also reports that she will have a large amount of responsibility early on in the job. Top of her agenda will be the launch of an exercise to tender the bank’s audit contract, which is known to be one of the highest-value of its kind in Britain.
Joining from KPMG, where she has been serving as a partner, means that Ms Hall has plenty of expertise in the world of audits. But her appointment also represents another step towards the bank’s self-imposed goal of significantly increasing female representation in its most senior positions.
As far back as February, Lloyds announced its ambitious target of increasing the proportion of women in its 5,000 most senior positions to 40 per cent by 2020, the first decision of its kind in any major British business.
Given that the figure stood at 28 per cent at the time, leaders at the bank are under no illusions about the scale of the task ahead. But many interest groups came out in support of the move, acknowledging that there is plenty of work to be done in the next few years.
According to the 30% Club, an organisation which encourages firms to increase female representation to at least a third, “The timescale Lloyds has set itself is realistic; appointments to senior positions need obviously to be made on merit and require experience that cannot be attained overnight.
“The current lack of a strong pipeline of senior women reflects a range of factors, including sociological and cultural norms and traditional business practices, developed over many decades.”
With Ms Hall’s appointment, Lloyds moves slightly closer to its target, but there is still more to be done to develop new female talent throughout the ranks.
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