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15 March 2023

Parker Review publishes FTSE 350 firms’ ethnic diversity targets in the UK

The Parker Review committee has announced new targets for improving the ethnic diversity of FTSE 350 senior management teams and large private businesses in the UK, which include pharma companies.

In its first report published in 2017, the Parker Review announced a series of recommendations and set a ‘One by 2021’ target for all boards of FTSE 100 companies to have a minimum of one director with a minority ethnic background by December 2021.

For all FTSE 250 boards, the Review also set a similar ‘One by 2024’ target. Carried out together with the Department for Business and Trade, the voluntary census showed that 96 FTSE 100 companies had minority ethnic representation on their boards as of 31 December 2022.

Of the four companies which failed to meet the target, one company has been purchased since December and is no longer part of the FTSE 100.

The committee noted that 18% of all FTSE 100 positions are held by minority ethnic group directors. 

In the FTSE 100, 31 of the chair and executive director positions included a minority ethnic director, consisting of six people from ethnic minorities.

People from ethnic minorities now hold about 10% of influential positions.

The committee has also launched new targets for December 2027.

Under these targets, each FTSE 350 company will be required to set a percentage target for senior management positions. Ethnic minority executives will occupy these positions during that period. 

Additionally, 50 of the private companies in the UK need to have a minimum of one ethnic minority director on the main board by December 2027.

Each company should also set a target for the percentage of ethnic minority executives within its senior management team.

26 October 2022

Pharma’s ESG goals need to underscore push for health equity

Over recent years, many pharmaceutical companies have taken up environmental, social and governance (ESG) targets in order to prioritize sustainability whilst boosting their external public relations. On October 6, in a GlobalData webinar, experts tried to answer the question ‘Is Pharma at an ESG turning point?’, revealing a multitude of diverse strategies for pharmaceutical companies to remain conscious of their global impact. 

GlobalData is the parent company of Pharmaceutical Technology

While there is significant interest among pharma companies to improve their environmental record and reduce their carbon footprint, and rightfully so, the “social” and “governance” aspects are often neglected. Experts at the recent webinar presented health equity data, showing the opportunities to achieve significant financial gain whilst reducing health inequity. 

A survey in GlobalData’s Healthcare Industry Business Confidence Report 2020 placed sustainability initiatives at the bottom of a list of the pharmaceutical sector’s main priorities. At the time, pharmaceutical professionals placed “customer retention”, “improving operational market share” and “improving social responsibility initiatives” as the most important priorities for their businesses. However, in GlobalData’s 2021 Global Management Insight Survey, 58.4% of respondents said “Yes” to the question “Do you think the Covid-19 pandemic has acted as a catalyst for increased focus and action on ESG issues?”, showing a potential shift in pharmaceutical perspectives towards sustainability. 

Companies such as Merck and Takeda have led the way with goals to reduce their environmental impacts by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, water consumption, and more. These actions, amongst others, aim to meet the goals of the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP21 Paris agreement. 

In 2020, PhRMA announced its industry-wide Racial Justice Principles on clinical trial diversity to help Black and brown communities by reducing barriers to clinical trial access, incorporating real-world data, and enhancing information about diversity and inclusion in clinical trial populations.

18 April 2023

Report: Women’s well-being suffers more than men’s in a hybrid work world

Research published in April by health insurer Vitality as part of a new report on hybrid working, reveals that women’s health and well-being is suffering more than their male counterparts in a hybrid working world.   

A survey of 2,005 UK office workers found that more than one-third of women (35%) reported increased stress levels compared with 24% for men, with more women reporting a decline in mental health (28% vs 18%) and physical fitness (31% vs 17%).

This may be why more women (71%) than men (53%) are calling for even greater flexibility in how and where they work as a way to improve their health and well-being in the future. Of those surveyed, more than two-fifths (46%) of women say they would be willing to quit their job if their employer didn’t prioritise their health and well-being as part of a hybrid working approach, indicating that they are holding their employer to higher account.  

In fact, all employees are clear that they want bosses to play a more active role in supporting their health and well-being. Most men and women (82%) believe their employers now have a greater responsibility to offer health and well-being support post-pandemic – with nearly three in ten (29%) wanting to relinquish some of their own responsibility for their physical and mental health to their employer.   

When looking at which environment supports them best, both men (44%) and women (47%) agree that hybrid working is best for their mental well-being. Hybrid working also came out on top for both women (38%) and men (39%) when it comes to productivity.