Fifty-fifty programme: heading for managerial parity

By ENGIE - 07 March 2022 - 16:58

In 2020, ENGIE introduced the Fifty-Fifty programme to step up the integration of women in the Group and to achieve managerial parity by 2030. Through the programme, we undertook substantive work which, combined with cultural change, is now beginning to bear fruit. Here we find out more with Renata Spada, Group Vice-President Talent Acquisition, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.


First off, a somewhat ingenuous question: why is it essential to include more female managers in a specialist energy Group like ENGIE?

Renata Spada: Quite simply because it would be a shame and a serious mistake to miss out on half of humanity and, in so doing, a vast pool of talent! Our highly complex industrial environment must undergo in-depth transformation. To do this, ENGIE, as a leader in the energy transition, is focusing on innovation; and this can only thrive in an environment that encourages diversity and inclusion. This involves recruiting more women in all Group strata, including at managerial level. Which is the ultimate objective of the Fifty-Fifty programme, launched in June 2020 to achieve nothing less than a cultural transformation.


How do you evaluate the relative progression of female managers in the Group last year?

R. S.: We are in line with our expectations for the beginning of the Programme. Today, ENGIE has about 30% women in top management. In its ranking of the number of women in executive bodies, the French Ministry for Gender Equality puts us in seventh position out of 120 French companies. We are also ranked 47th European company (out of 668 corporations assessed) in the "Women on Boards Gender Diversity Index 2021". Of course, we don't intend to rest on our laurels. We want to go much further. Our aim is to achieve gender parity among executives by 2030, in a group which accounts for over 40,000 employees. At the end of 2021, female executives accounted for about 25% of the Group's workforce. The pandemic hasn't helped, particularly in terms of recruitment. But it is important to understand that it takes time to change mindsets and corporate culture. I am confident that we have introduced the tools that will enable us to change how things are done.


Talking of which, what are the drivers we can adopt to encourage change?

R. S.: Under the Fifty-Fifty programme, we have created different projects and tools to help us move more quickly. For example, to encourage employees to tackle the subject of inclusion, we launched the Fifty-Fifty Library, a platform providing a wealth of resources. We also offer many different virtual training courses for our managers and an e-learning programme for all our employees, designed in partnership with ENGIE University, which covers inclusion, diversity, professional equality, etc. This helps all the women and men we employ to identify inclusive behaviour, in order to create a working environment in line with our ambitions. We are also revising our company policies (parenthood, equal pay, high potential identification, etc.) to make them more inclusive. We work with all our operational entities to develop action plans.  Finally, we rely on the work of our ambassadors – for the "Change Drivers" and "ChangeMakHers" networks, for example - to push the boundaries. They make active contributions in these areas and help raise awareness among their colleagues. We'll talk again in a few months' time and you'll see that things will have changed for the better!


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