Now a new campaign launched by Baroness Verma, a junior minister at the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), has made a call for higher representation of female STEM workers in the energy sector.
Launching the initiative earlier this month, Verma highlighted that the sector is losing too many of its female employees at the middle-management stage of their careers.
The initiative helps to work towards restoring the gender balance in the coming years aiming for 30% of executive energy company board members and 40% of energy company middle management to be female by 2030.
In six months time the Office for Nuclear Regulation and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) will have to report back to Verma on their progress in realising greater diversity in their workforces.
More women in energy – EDF leading the way
One energy firm that is already leading the way in increasing the number of women in its workforce, is ‘Big Six’ energy supplier, EDF.
Within a year, the firm has more than doubled the female proportion of its graduate engineers to 32%. Paul Spence, EDF’s Director of Strategy and Corporate Affairs, also outlined that there has been a staggering 190% improvement in the number of female applications. This has led, to amongst other things, a 14% increase in the proportion of female apprentices to 20%.
Other strides the company has taken to highlight the benefits of a career in the energy sector include the introduction of Energy Day.
On its launch in 2012, 20 female engineering undergraduates from across the UK participated in the event.
Speaking about the event’s aims at the time, Janet Hogben, EDF Energy’s Chief People Officer, said: “Energy Day is a showcase. We want to attract the best people to work for us and we do that by showing what we have to offer and giving people opportunities to talk with us. We want people to find out why these are exciting times at EDF Energy.
“Energy Day is also about putting engineering back on the map, tackling the gender gap and making people realise that in tough economic times this is an expanding sector that is going to need quality recruits for years to come.”
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