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Times Top 50 Employers for Gender Equality includes Vodafone

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Times Top 50 Employers for Gender Equality includes Vodafone

Run by Business in the Community, The Times Top 50 Employers for Gender Equality recognises companies who weave gender equality through each level of their business strategy. Here are some of the reasons why Vodafone UK has made the list.

Previously called The Times Top 50 Employers for Women, Vodafone UK has once again made the prestigious list. This is a testament to how the company continues to pursue an inclusive working environment that celebrates diversity and equality, through:

1. Clear targets

With women still only accounting for roughly a quarter of the UK tech sector, Vodafone recognises its responsibility to celebrate and support talented women in what remains a male-dominated field.

Committed to a more equal future, Vodafone UK’s goal is for 45% of senior management roles to be held by women by 2030. The company is very close to reaching this.

Even so, Vodafone recognises there is still work to do in other areas, such as closing the mean gender pay gap, which has already been reduced from 16.9% in 2017 to 9% in 2023.

Nicki Lyons on the importance of International Women’s Day

Vodafone’s UK Chief Corporate Affairs & Sustainability Officer, Nicki Lyons, talks about what International Women’s Day means to her.

2. A supportive network

Vodafone’s internal UK Gender Equality Network was created to support goals like this, comprising a group of employees that works to celebrate diversity in every context.

Together, this network helps Vodafone staff to achieve their potential, no matter their background and career, by creating a safe place for people to discuss challenges and share ideas.

Supported by Executive Sponsor Nicki Lyons, Vodafone UK’s Chief Corporate Affairs & Sustainability Officer, the network helps drive policies on gender-related topics.

“There’s still so much to be done when it comes to creating not just gender equality, but equity, in the workplace. However, I’m proud of what we’ve achieved so far at Vodafone. From market-leading parental leave to continuing to reduce our gender pay gap, we’re working hard to be the best employer possible for women.”

Nicki Lyons, Chief Corporate Affairs & Sustainability, Vodafone UK

3. Impactful policies

Some of these policies include:

  • The provision of leave for those experiencing the menopause, in addition to dedicated support through an Employee Assistance Programme and a partnership with MenoHealth.
  • Two weeks of Carers’ Leave per dependent each year, as well as a Care Concierge Service, for employees caring for those who are older, disabled or seriously ill – a role that predominantly skews towards women the UK.
  • 16 weeks of fully-paid parental leave for any non-birthing partner or secondary carer, plus the option to return for four days a week (at full pay) for the first six months. This helps men and non-birthing parents to take a more active role in the care of their newly-born children.

4. Employee events

Each year on 8 March, Vodafone UK celebrates International Women’s Day, hosting various events in support of gender equality in the workplace.

2024 saw TV personality Emma Willis host a panel discussion at Vodafone’s Speechmark office in London, featuring Non-Executive Director of Wales Rugby Union Group, Amanda Bennett, and Founder of Girls Talk Corporation, Vanessa Sanyauke.

Beyond this, other supportive events are regularly held throughout the business, with the Digital & IT team recently hosting an ‘Inspiring Women in Tech’ event, which saw Vodafone joined by industry leaders from Accenture, AWS and MongoDB.

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