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Gender balance

The proportion of women employed across BP is higher than ever before, with female representation at 35% in 2018


Women lead some of our core businesses such as petrochemicals, shipping, and treasury, and countries such as Canada, China, Mexico and the US.  However, while we are making progress, women make up half the world’s population and we still have a lot more to do.


Shifting the gender imbalance will require a significant change in both our industry and society at large. One of the ways in which we can support this change is by having the right policies in place. For example, our diversity and inclusion policy promotes diversity in our job shortlists and interview panels.


We are also using mentoring, sponsorship and coaching to help more women progress through their careers and are working to improve and implement policies that support flexible career development for all. We refreshed our flexible working principles in 2018. These encourage flexibility beyond the formal areas of part time, job sharing or working from home.


We are working with our peers to close the gender gap in our industry. For example, we partner with POWERful Women, an initiative to advance gender diversity and female leadership development in the energy sector.

BP employees by gender (%)

All staff

We participate in industry mentoring to advance gender diversity

Graduate hires

Graduate hires

We work closely with universities to attract women into scientific and engineering roles

Experienced hires

We support programmes that enable women to resume their careers after a break

Group leaders

We are on track for women to represent a quarter of our most senior managers by 2020

Executive team

Two women joined the executive team in 2018 – our chief scientist and the head of our US business

Board directors

We achieved our goal for women to represent 30% of our board two years ahead of schedule

UK gender pay gap reporting

We make sure employees in similar roles are paid equitably. However, our 2018 data shows we do have a gender pay gap that varies across our UK businesses. This is largely due to a higher proportion of men in senior roles and specific roles, such as offshore work, that attract higher pay, bonuses or allowances. We are working to address the differences, recognizing that this is a long-term challenge. We have seen a slight improvement in female representation in leadership roles and our 2018 gender pay gap data shows some improvements compared with 2017.