Citigroup's got some new targets for hiring and promoting women

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It's the time of year when investment banks release their sustainability and social responsibility reports. Yesterday was Goldman Sachs. Today is Citigroup. And Citi has got some big(ish) targets when it comes to recruiting and promoting females. 

Citi said today that it wants to increase the proportion of women occupying its assistant vice president to managing director-level positions (inclusive) to 40% by 2021. This sounds fairly impressive (even though women account for 50% of the population at large). It sounds less impressive when you consider that women already account for 37% of people in those roles at Citi, and a 300 basis point increase in three years isn't really that much.

Citi also has some targets concerning interviews. When the bank is interviewing for managing director and director level hires globally, it now ensures that at least one interviewee is a woman. In the U.S., it ensures that at least one interviewee is either a woman or an ethnic minority. Citi didn't respond to a request to comment on how many people it typically interviews per role. However, in 2018 76% of the bank's interviews for managing director and director roles included at least one 'diverse' candidate. 

Citi's targets date back to last August and were flagged by its head of HR, Sara Wechter, at the start of this year. Wechter said the bank is committed to increasing the representation of women and U.S. minorities in senior and higher-paying roles at Citi.

According to the most recent gender pay gap figures for banks in the UK, Citigroup Global Markets (Citi's London-based sales and trading arm) has a gender pay gap only slightly above the wholesale banking average. Women account for 49% of employees in the lowest paid quartile at Citigroup Global Markets, but for only 11% of employees in its highest paid quartile.

Citi isn't the only bank with gender hiring targets. Goldman Sachs wants to ensure that 50% of all the analysts and associates it hires are women in future. Earlier this month, Financial News reported that headhunters were being offered 20% higher fees to find female candidates. 

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