Only 1 in 25 CEOs of the UK’s largest public companies are women, according to a new report.

An analysis of senior management in the FTSE 350 list of the largest companies listed on the London Stock Exchange found that 96% of CEOs are men.

That’s despite entry-level hiring often being close to 50:50, according to an analysis by gender and diversity consulting firm The Pipeline.

The Women Count 2022 report found that three quarters of FTSE 350 executive committee members are men and a quarter are women. The executive committees of 10% of companies had no women at all, and the main boards of directors of almost 70% of companies had no female executive directors at all.

The path to CEO is dominated by men: a report shows that three out of four executives who make it to CEO are men.

But when women become CEOs, women are more likely to be appointed to other roles in the upper echelons of FTSE 350 companies.

An analysis by The Pipeline found that companies headed by women are more than four times more likely to appoint female CEOs to their top boards than companies headed by men.

The proportion of women executives on the board of companies with a female CEO is 63%, compared to 14% when the CEO is a man, the report said.

The problem of lack of equal gender representation exists throughout senior management. In the FTSE 350, 82% of chief financial officers (CFOs) are men.

Read more: Men are much more likely to be offered company shares than women

The Women Count report tracked gender diversity on UK executive committees over the past seven years and described progress over that time as “glacially slow”.

The outlook for women looking to break into the upper echelons of FTSE 350 companies “looks as bleak as ever”, writes The Pipeline. However, this year, compared to last year, there were four more female managers.

Other FTSE indices showed similar irregularities. There are 91 men and 7 women in the FTSE 100 and 168 men and 5 women in the FTSE 250.

The numbers do not add up to 100, 250 and 350 because not every FTSE-listed organization has a CEO, the report said. Some investment vehicles often have only an investment manager and no additional staff.

Data were collected by examining company websites, annual and other reports, and direct contact with companies.

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