The percentage of women leaders in corporations in the commercial freight transportation industry continues to increase, according to data highlighted in the WIT Index, which was just released by the Women In Trucking Association. The WIT Index is an industry barometer to benchmark and measure each year the percentage of women who make up critical roles in transportation.
The 2022 WIT Index shows 33.8% of C-suite executives in transportation companies are women, an increase of 1.5% compared with 2019 when the last WIT Index was measured. In addition, the 2022 WIT Index shows 39.6% of company leaders are female. “Company leaders” are defined as someone with supervisory responsibilities and also includes executives within the C-suite.
“Every large carrier today started with a man and a truck,” said Ellen Voie, WIT’s president and CEO, in a press release. “As more and more women become leaders, owners and directors in the trucking industry we are looking forward to the days of women owned and led companies."
The WIT Index shows 31% of individuals serving on boards of directors are female. There is evidence that larger companies in transportation tend to have a smaller percentage of women on their boards, according to Voie. For example, the 14 publicly traded asset-based carriers had an average of 23% women on their board of directors in 2021, according to Bloomberg. These companies continue to make progress in diverse gender representation on their boards, as this was up from 22% compared with 2020 and 18% in 2019. However, there is still significant to be done in incorporating more gender diversity to boards of directors, as the 2022 WIT Index shows 21% of respondents have no females on their boards.
Initiated in 2016, the WIT Index is comprised of average percentages of females in various roles that are reported by companies in transportation, including predominantly for-hire trucking companies, private fleets, transportation intermediaries, railroads, ocean carriers, equipment manufacturers, and technology companies. This year's data was confidentially gathered from January through April of 2022 from 180 participating companies and percentages are reported only as aggregate totals of respondents.
This year, WIT has expanded its collection on the percentage of women in additional functional roles, including operations, technicians, human resources and talent management, and marketing.