Female Workforce Fares Better Working for Committed Equity Advocates in Pharma
Data Show Support for Women in the Industry
FAIRFIELD, NJ (10 December, 2020) – Despite discouraging news on how workplace equity is not accelerating and in some cases even regressing due to the pandemic, recent positive survey data reveal that women working for the pharmaceutical and medical products industries, and companies aligned with the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA), are faring better than women in other industries.
HBA’s recent member surveys report that more than 80 percent of women in the community said their employer has supported family and caregiving responsibilities; and 75 percent of industry women said they remain committed to their careers and will not be downshifting or leaving as a result of the pandemic.
“While these trends are encouraging, other recent data share disappointing facts that women of color are still dramatically underrepresented particularly in high level roles, and have been disproportionately impacted by the Covid crisis,” said Laurie Cooke, president and CEO of HBA. “Our industry recognizes systemic shifts are required to accelerate equity—for all women—and we are committed to work with companies to integrate strategies and practices that will result in better outcomes for women in our member company workforces worldwide.”
To help drive systemic gender equity and parity progress, the HBA launched the Gender Parity Collaborative two years ago. The founding and current member companies contribute to the Women in the Workplace annual study demonstrating commitment beyond a standard pledge that establishes baseline metrics and targets and measures annual progress for which they hold each other accountable and commit to improve.
Since 2018, this consortium of industry champions has focused on women of color as a top priority and has adopted actionable practices to accelerate change and progress. All 16 companies rate both gender diversity and race/ethnic diversity as a top priority; more than half of Collaborative companies have leadership teams comprised of 33 plus percent women and 88 percent have built in support networks (internal women’s networks or employee resource groups) for female employees.
Recently the HBA recognized GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a founding member of the Collaborative, with a 2020 ACE Award for their game-changing Women’s Leadership Initiative. With more than 6,800 members in 65 countries, the program’s achievements include increases of women in management with 36 percent of senior management roles—VP and above. GSK’s launch of a Field Leadership Development Initiative for Women of Color also produced measurable success with nearly 70 percent of the initial cohort promoted to management grade roles.
“GSK and our Collaborative member companies are champions of equity, inclusion and belonging and are fostering contemporary workplace cultures that are having a profound and sustainable impact for women in the workplace and we applaud their leadership,” said Cooke.
The HBA’s Gender Parity Collaborative is an award-winning consortium of 16 leading healthcare and life-sciences companies dedicated to accelerating gender parity and diversity by fostering and adopting systemic changes in the industry workplace. With insight from the annual Women in the Workplace study, Collaborative member companies commit to take an active role in defining strategies and practices that result in measurable, sustainable and impactful change. As champions for a more equitable workplace, these advocates recognize that gender parity is not a women’s issue but a business imperative that ultimately will drive better business results. Member companies include: Advanced Clinical, Amgen, Bristol Myers Squibb, Cardinal Health, Genentech, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, Lundbeck, Medidata, Novartis, Parexel, Pfizer, Quest Diagnostics, Sanofi, Takeda, W2O Group
The Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) is a global not-for-profit organization dedicated to furthering the advancement and impact of women in the business of healthcare. With 55 locations throughout the United States, Canada and Europe, the HBA serves a community of nearly 57,000 individuals and nearly 150 corporate partners. The HBA provides networking forums to build relationships; access to industry thought leaders to broaden perspective; educational programs to develop leadership skills and global recognition of outstanding individuals and companies to promote visibility of their achievements in advancing gender parity in the workplace.