About our gender balance

The railway wants to build an industry reflecting the diverse customers it serves, with the right skills and the relevant training.

We are committed to enhancing the diversity of our people and the inclusiveness of our working arrangements, practices and policies. 

Gender pay gap

Honouring this commitment means fostering a work environment where everyone is rewarded fairly for the work they do and the contributions they make. Addressing the gender pay gap is one part of this and we are setting a strong diversity and inclusion agenda to address both conscious and unconscious bias within our teams.

Male dominated industries tend to have greater gender pay gaps. Our gender pay gap of 20% is primarily caused by women still being under-represented in the highest paid roles and in highly paid technical/specialist roles. We are determined to change this. 

We are working hard, both internally and collaborating across the industry to break down the barriers women face accessing the senior roles in the organisation and in STEM careers. This includes attracting and recruiting more women into junior technical and engineering roles. In the short-term, it is possible that we may slow progress in reducing the gender pay gap. However, I am confident that long-term these initiatives will create a diverse workforce and play a key role in narrowing the gender pay gap.

Gender balance

gender balance
Our workforce

We have made significant progress in improving our gender balance within RDG, but we want to do more. Five years ago, only a third of our organisation were female, compared to 44.3% now. We had no female representation among the Executive or in senior leadership roles, compared to 37.5% females in the Executive and 30% in senior leadership now. We are continuing to develop new strategies to build a more diverse workforce and an environment that fosters inclusion and equal opportunities at all levels within our business. This work includes:

  • A new diversity and inclusion policy and programme
  • Continued review of our HR Policies, including the promotion of our enhanced family friendly leave entitlements
  • Awareness training around the positive action provisions of the equality act and recruitment and selection
  • The launch of Grow and Aspire, encouraging employees to take ownership of their development, promoting activities such as coaching, mentoring and job shadowing
  • The promotion of support networks such as Women in Rail
  • Exploring how we can better promote diverse working patterns and increased flexibility
  • The roll out of the work experience and graduate programmes
  • Identifying and developing individuals with potential, through programmes such as the CMI
  • Encouraging promotion from within
  • Celebrating promotions, qualifications and awards
  • Structured succession planning.

Rail and its supply chain will create 100,000 more jobs for Britain in the coming years, increasing diversity and providing employees with rewarding careers. It is essential that we have the best people to undertake the important work we do. We acknowledge that we are on a journey and we accept that progress to tackle the gender pay gap may not always be in one direction, but we believe that diverse teams deliver the best outcomes. 

Meet some of the women who work in key roles within RDG 


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