8 Mar 2013

Senior women managers' numbers stalled

7:40 am on 8 March 2013

The number of women in senior management in New Zealand is stalled at 28% of businesses.

A study by Grant Thornton to mark International Women's Day on Friday shows 30% of firms had no women in senior management, bucking the international trend. And fewer firms offered flexible working hours.

Overall New Zealand's ranking fell seven places to 17th out of 44 countries.

Nevertheless, Bank of New Zealand chief executive Andrew Thorburn has been been recognised by the United Nation for his efforts to have greater female representation among the bank's top executives.

Mr Thorburn says a quarter of the bank's senior management are women and he's aiming to get that to a third.

He said the number of businesses being started by women in New Zealand is quite compelling and women's influence over major financial decisions in households and businesses is also growing significantly.

Mr Thorburn said for businesses to not recognise that fact, is omitting something very significant.

"For businesses, particularly large businesses which are hard to change culturally, we need to have more women in senior roles because they bring a different perspective."