A study conducted by recruitment consultancy Green Park found that FTSE 100 companies in the UK are failing to improve the ethnic diversity of their boardrooms. The findings reveal that the number of executive and non-executive black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) board members has dropped from 9% in 2018 to 7.4% in 2019. The number of finance directors, chief executives and chairs was unchanged at 3.3%. Forty-seven of FTSE 100 companies do not have a BAME executive director and board member.
According to Green Park chair Trevor Phillips, the results are disappointing because the companies failed to fulfill their promise five years ago to improve ethnic representation in their boardrooms. Moreover, the pipeline for BAME board leaders is empty.
To address the problem, the report recommended the appointment of a chief diversity officer similar to what American corporations have done. If they don’t, they could lose key talents to competitors and become the focus of regulatory attention. The only accomplishment of Britain’s largest companies is that they have increased the boardroom representation of women to 28.8%.