EEF dismisses calls for boardroom quotas for women

Manufacturers' organisation EEF has said more steps should be taken to end male dominance in manufacturing companies' boards, but it dismissed proposals for fixing quotas to boost the number.

In its just released "Women in Manufacturing" report, EEF said that nearly 21 per cent of directorships at FTSE 100 manufacturing companies are now held by women, and suggested that the industry should shed its "dirty & unglamorous" image to boost gender balance in boardrooms.

It revealed that women accounts for 64 of the 305 board seats at twenty-eight manufacturing companies in the FTSE 100.

But, it stressed that it should be done by nurturing young talent by encouraging girls at schools to study Stem subjects - science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and not by fixing quotas for women in boardrooms.

Terry Scuoler, chief executive of the EEF, said, "Many of the leading women in manufacturing are equally clear - quotas are not the answer. They advocate evolution, not revolution . but, this isn't just about what we as manufacturers can do. The work starts in the classroom."

The report also featured North East businesswoman Jacqui Miller as an inspiring example of female who reached a senior level in the manufacturing sector. Ms Miller is the global sales & marketing director at Cramlington-based Miller UK, which was established in 1978.