Sodexo has brought in International Women’s Day with a successful night at the Northern Power Women Awards.

Christine Williams, HR director, Service Operations, and Jo Manifold, director of learning and development, were inducted into the Northern Power Women Top 50 Future List which recognises the influencers, leaders and change makers of the future who are already making a difference.

FM development manager Jane Farrell won the Transformational Leader award for her gender diversity work in the security industry.

Sodexo’s commitment to gender balance has seen it listed in The Times Top 50 Employers for Women for the last three years.

In November last year Sodexo announced its gender pay gap, one of the first organisations of its size to do so. Sodexo’s gender pay gap of 7.65 per cent is less than half the Office of National Statistics national average (18.1 per cent), and Sodexo is committed to reduce it further.

Sodexo’s global research shows gender balanced management teams outperform those without across a range of business drivers.

Gross profit, employee engagement and client retention were among the indicators where Sodexo management teams with a 40-60 per cent gender split outperformed their less balanced counterparts.

Sodexo’s 2016 Global Diversity and Inclusion Report shows global senior executives are 30 per cent women. Global CEO Michel Landel has set a target to increase that figure to 35 per cent by 2020 and 40 per cent by 2025.

Gender is one of six workstreams to make up Sodexo’s diversity and inclusion strategy, alongside generation, cultures and origins, sexual orientation and gender identity, disability and inclusion.

James Taylor, CEO Healthcare Sodexo UK & Ireland and executive sponsor of the gender workstream, said: “We’re delighted to be celebrating International Women’s Day with a very successful night at the Northern Power Women Awards. Congratulations to all my Sodexo colleagues who were recognised at the ceremony.

“Creating an environment where everyone can fully contribute is central to Sodexo’s mission to improve quality of life, and we have worked hard over the last six years to bring greater gender balance to our activity, as evidenced in the UK and Ireland by our gender pay gap. However, this is just the beginning. We need to work hard every day to drive a culture where no matter your background you can enjoy a rewarding career with Sodexo.”

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