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The MBA gender gap is closing

There are signs that the gender gap surrounding MBAs is beginning to close, but efforts are still needed to enact full equality in the workplace.

 

Postgraduate student studying new ideas about education

A study by the Forté Foundation found that the number of women taking MBA programmes in the US had risen by 4 percentage points in the four years to 2015.

A year ago, statistics from the US showed that ambitious women have continued to close the gender gap each year when it comes to studying at business school.

study by the Forté Foundation found that the number of women taking MBA programmes in the US had risen by 4 percentage points in the four years to 2015.

In 2011, it was below one third of enrolees. By 2015, this had risen to more than 36% and was predicted to rise further.

Twelve member schools in the US, including Harvard Business School, the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern, and Sloan at MIT, boast female enrolment rates of 40% or higher.

The Foundation, launched in 2001 to address the levels of inequality in business-related disciplines, suggested that the growing number of women studying at business schools could eventually redress the percentage of women occupying executive roles, where numbers have remained scarce.

Elissa Sangster, the Foundation’s Executive Director, described every gain as “not only hard earned, but something to celebrate”.

View of London skyline from Senate House

In the UK, upcoming regulations surrounding gender pay are another – albeit broader – step towards addressing the gender gap in senior roles.

In the UK, upcoming regulations surrounding gender pay are another – albeit broader – step towards addressing the gender gap in senior roles.

The regulations (if approved) will require employers with 250 or more employees to calculate and publish information including average hourly rates, bonus allocations, and how men and women are distributed along the organisation’s pay structure.

The new measures are intended to highlight the proportion of men and women in higher and lower paid roles across an organisation – as this will affect the average levels of pay by gender.

Employers will also need to publish the report on their own website and submit evidence of compliance to the Government. They won’t be compelled to explain the gap, but recommendations are in place to assist companies who wish to review and update policies as a result of the gender pay gap.

These include equality agendas, equal professional development opportunities, and arrangements surrounding paternity / maternity leave and shared entitlement.

If the gender pay gap looks equal, employers will have strong ammunition to promote the inclusive nature of their organisations and attract talent of both genders to their staffing pool.

Our flexible MBA means that you won’t need to take time away from the workplace or lose your career momentum. On the contrary, it will give you every opportunity to advance your current role.