Firmenich commits to 100% certified gender equality employer status in 2018

By Sian Gardiner

- Last updated on GMT

Firmenich commits to 100% certified gender equality employer status in 2018
Switzerland-based Firmenich has renewed its pledge to achieve company-wide parity, announcing its commitment to becoming a 100% certified gender equality employer in 2018.

The major fragrance and flavour player’s inclusive programmes reportedly stretch from compensation, recruitment and promotion practices to leadership training and mentoring, in addition to flexible work arrangements and the overall company culture.

Equal pay across global operations

Firmenich already regularly benchmarks its global compensation structure in pursuit of equity and fairness in the workplace.

In 2015, the Group’s efforts led to it being certified by the Swiss Government as an Equal Pay Employer.

Building on this recognition and using the same methodology, Firmenich went on to confirm equal pay performance across its main sites.

In 2018, the Group is making equal pay a global standard across all its operations.

The “right thing for society”

Commenting on the announcement, Gilbert Ghostine, CEO of Firmenich, said: “In line with the Firmenich values, we consistently offer equal opportunities for all our colleagues to thrive around the world.”

“Building on our certification by the Swiss Government as an Equal Pay Employer, I am proud to be making this benchmark our global standard today. This is not only the right thing to do for society but also for business!”

36% female leadership

“Equality is embedded across Firmenich at all levels, starting at the top, with our Executive Committee, counting seven nationalities and one third of women,” said Mieke Van de Capelle, Chief Human Resources Officer at Firmenich.

She added: “Globally, our female colleagues represent 40% of our workforce and 36% of our senior management.

“By being certified as a 100% gender equality employer, we are reaching our next level of excellence, going far beyond equal pay, with clear benchmarks to measure our success transparently​.”

Industry-wide issue

According to a 2017 report from the LedBetter Gender Equality Index​, Firmenich’s rate of 36 per cent women in senior management already puts it almost ten per cent above the industry standard.

Beauty brands have an average of just 29 per cent of female leadership across boards and executive teams, as reported by The Entrepreneur earlier this year.

In fact, the LedBetter Index showed that brands such as L Brands (parent company of Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Co) have a complete lack of female representation on their executive teams, indicating an industry-wide need to adopt commitments like that of Firmenich.

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