Aviation still lagging behind on gender gap, survey shows

Only 16% of companies indicated that more than 30% of senior roles are held by women

Christine O’Donovan, head of aviation and international asset finance at Mason Hayes & Curran, says the percentage of women at senior level in the industry is still low.

Christine O’Donovan, head of aviation and international asset finance at Mason Hayes & Curran, says the percentage of women at senior level in the industry is still low.

 

Just one in six companies in the aviation sector have more than 30 per cent of their senior roles filled by women, according to a survey by law firm Mason Hayes & Curran.

The survey, which shows that the sector is falling behind in terms of its responsibility to close gender gaps, indicates women and those from minority groups are still struggling to progress to senior leadership positions.

More than seven out of 10 respondents said that over 30 per cent of the total headcount in their companies was female, with only 16 per cent of the respondents indicating that over 30 per cent of the senior roles in their organisations are held by women.

Just 14 per cent of respondents indicated that they were from a minority group such as an ethnic or religious minority or LGBTQI, which was a slight increase on 2018. However, only 4 per cent stated that their manager came from a minority group.

The survey also highlighted a state of unpreparedness for gender pay gap reporting legislation. Only 14 per cent of respondents stated their company had already carried out an analysis, while 41 per cent were unsure if their company had done anything.

In terms of board-level diversity, 28 per cent said their organisation still has an all-male board, despite the fact that many studies show that board diversity leads to enhanced board effectiveness and enhanced company performance.

Christine O’Donovan, head of aviation and international asset finance at Mason Hayes & Curran, said business leaders should “harness the benefits” of having people from diverse backgrounds working with them.

“The aviation industry is very competitive, and business leaders will want to make sure they are reaping the benefits that diversity can bring to their business,” she said.

“Looking at the survey results, there has been a slight increase in the number of respondents identifying as being part of a minority group, which is a positive development. However, the percentage of women at senior level is still low.

“Business leaders need to harness the benefits that bringing people from diverse backgrounds into their organisations can bring, especially considering that employees, particularly graduates, are expectant of a dynamic workplace.”