KPMG and PWC re­ject all-male lists from re­cruiters

The Sunday Telegraph - Money & Business - - Front page - By Lucy Bur­ton

BIG FOUR ac­coun­tants KPMG and PWC have warned re­cruiters they will no longer tol­er­ate all-male short­lists as UK bosses come un­der in­creas­ing pres­sure to hire fe­male ex­ec­u­tives.

KPMG’S UK chair­man, Bill Michael, held a crunch meet­ing with re­cruiters last month to make clear that the firm had adopted a “no tol­er­ance” ap­proach to can­di­date lists with no women on them, sources have told The Sun­day Telegraph.

Joined by head of au­dit Philip David­son, and se­nior part­ner Anna Pur­chas, the KPMG ex­ec­u­tives told agencies to try harder to find tal­ented women if they want to keep work­ing for the au­di­tor. The trio ar­gued that some re­cruiters have claimed there are no el­i­gi­ble fe­male can­di­dates for cer­tain roles, only for them to go to find the tal­ent quickly them­selves.

The stern warn­ing came months af­ter the ac­coun­tant re­vealed that women earned 42pc less than men on av­er­age due to the lack of women in the top, best-paid roles. PWC, which has also in­tro­duced a ban on all-male can­di­dates, has the high­est gen­der pay gap of the Big Four at 43.8pc.

Spokes­men for Deloitte and EY said they look for di­verse short­lists but do not have a ban in place.

Many fi­nan­cial ser­vices firms are re­con­sid­er­ing their hir­ing poli­cies fol­low­ing the Gov­ern­ment’s manda­tory gen­der pay re­port­ing rules. Price com­par­i­son web­site Gocom­pare, for ex­am­ple, in­sisted on an all-fe­male short­list for its lat­est se­nior va­cancy.

The topic was brought into sharp fo­cus last week af­ter the Trea­sury picked the only man from a short­list of five for a role on the Bank of Eng­land’s mon­e­tary pol­icy com­mit­tee.

On the same day, a gov­ern­ment­backed re­view shamed some of Bri­tain’s lead­ing com­pa­nies into us­ing “piti­ful and pa­tro­n­is­ing” ex­cuses to keep women out of top jobs.

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