Meet the Best Women-Friendly Companies in the World 2022

When Clarissa Carpio returned home to San Diego in 2017 after six years of active duty as a US Navy lieutenant, the then 28-year-old bride knew she wanted to start a family and recover from a career. which required him to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Attending a veterans’ job fair, Carpio chatted with startups touting dreamy visions and big financial institutions singing the siren call of high paychecks. Yet neither offered what Carpio fundamentally needed in a new civilian role: time.

Carpio landed a job as a program manager with business consultancy firm Booz Allen Hamilton
and has been there almost as long as she has served in the military, having two children along the way.

“While the startup culture seemed exciting and the big company compensation was alluring, I really cared more about flexibility and ownership of my time,” says Carpio.

Even before the ubiquity of hybrid working spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic, Booz Allen offered flexible work arrangements and generous paid time off that supported Carpio’s dream of raising a family, especially since her husband was still on active duty in the Navy until 2020 and often at sea.

“The company has been incredibly supportive through my life transitions…they know your job isn’t your whole life,” says Carpio.

Click here for the full list of the best women-friendly companies in the world.

Booz Allen’s strong family support benefits and flexible working hours helped the company rank 8th in our second annual ranking of the world’s best women-friendly companies.

Forbes partnered with market research firm Statista to compile the rankings by anonymously surveying around 85,000 women working in multinational institutions in 36 countries. Respondents rated their employer’s performance on a range of gender-related topics, such as gender equality in career advancement opportunities and parental leave. Additionally, they were asked to rate other employers in their respective industries who stood out positively or negatively as champions of professional women.

The final ranking also assessed the representation of women at executive and board levels and how companies are using their platforms and marketing messages to promote gender equity. This year’s list includes the 400 companies that received the highest ratings. (See the full methodology below.)

Policy issues

Although US-based multinationals make up almost 50% of our rankings, only six, including Booz Allen Hamilton, make it into our top 20. The results reveal a stark contrast to Forbes’ recently released the World’s Best Employers 2022 ranking, where the United States took 12 of the top 20 spots.

Lorraine Hariton, president and CEO of Catalyst, a global nonprofit that accelerates progress for women through inclusion in the workplace, isn’t surprised. She cites weak US federal policies on family leave and child care as credible explanations for her relatively low representation.

“The United States lags other countries in the world in defined labor laws,” says Hariton, who served in the US State Department under President Obama. “We don’t have a paid parenting law, and that disproportionately affects women, especially women of color, in terms of career advancement, because they’re usually the primary caregivers in their homes.

Pamela Stone, professor emeritus of sociology at Hunter College in New York and author of Opting Out? : Why Do Women Really Give Up Their Careers? echoes this sentiment. “In my research, even when a man earns less than a woman in a household, the woman still takes the lead in raising the children or caring for an elderly relative or a sick relative” , says Stone. “In the end, there is should to be a more equal division of unpaid work, but right now, in our current reality, women need and want more control over their hours to be successful in both roles. U.S. laws currently don’t support it the way other countries do.”

The United States does not guarantee federally paid maternity or family leave. And while American women make up about half of the workforce, full-time female employees in the United States were paid 83 cents on the dollar in 2021 compared to men, and for every 100 men promoted from the level of entrance to manager, only 87 women and 82 women of color are promoted in the same way.

French companies, including insurance company MAIF (No. 3) and bioMérieux (No. 14), a leader in diagnostics, secured 55 places, the most after the United States, followed by the United Kingdom with 30, including retail groups John Lewis Partnership (#1). 5) and Sainsbury’s (#27.) Last December, France passed a new law, the Loi Rixain, which imposes quotas for female representation in senior management positions in large companies. Unequal pay is illegal in the UK and is covered by the Equality Act 2010.

Retail and wholesale was the most represented industry in our ranking, with US retailers Clorox
and best buy
landing at No. 2 and No. 15, respectively. Both have female CEOs and offer flexible working, generous paid vacation policies, and comprehensive career development and mentorship opportunities.

Advancing women “more than a tick box”

Claiming our #1 spot is dark horse Grupo Argos. The Colombian conglomerate, with revenue of $3.2 billion in 2021 and investments in traditionally male-dominated sectors such as construction, energy and engineering, previously ranked 100th in 2021. The company is the only one in our ranking with headquarters in Colombia.

Michelle Bordin Bez, director of talent development and corporate organization, attributes her high ranking to Grupo Argos’ intentional focus on DEI practices that are actionable rather than performative.

“Diversity and inclusion, especially when it comes to advancing women in traditionally male-dominated sectors, is more than a checkbox or a must-have,” says Bordin, who works with the company for over six years. “We are constantly thinking of ways to expand DEI and carefully measuring our progress, because we deeply understand that it makes our business better and more successful.”

Last year, the company pledged that by 2030, no less than 35% of senior management will be women. Today, the board of directors is predominantly female and women hold 50% of management positions.

The company also offers professional training programs for internal employees and the wider community in the countries where it does business, including Colombia, Panama, Honduras, the Caribbean and the United States, to create various talent pools.

Click here for the full list of the best women-friendly companies in the world.

Like our other top companies, Grupo Argos offers paid time off policies and flexible benefits.

“Studies repeatedly show that providing flexibility in when and how someone works makes employees not only happier but also more productive,” says Hariton. “It’s more impactful for women, but I like to say that workplaces that work for women work for everyone. As the US government is slow to impose federal policies to support this, companies have a real opportunity to set that standard.”

Los Angeles employment mediator and attorney Angela Reddock-Wright agrees that money isn’t enough to retain top talent, especially during “The Great Resignation” era, when employees voluntarily quit their jobs. en masse.

“Great employers understand that employees, especially women and women of color who benefit the most, who commit to taking on responsibilities beyond their careers, like being a good family member or a good contributor to society, don’t deny their commitment to their work,” says Reddock-Wright, who has practiced law for 20 years. “Companies that think of the whole person in this way and have programs that demonstrate this in action are not only able to survive but also to thrive in the modern world.”


To determine the 2022 ranking, Statista surveyed 85,000 women from 36 countries working for multinationals. All surveys were anonymous, allowing participants to share their opinions openly. Respondents were asked to rate their employers’ performance on gender-related criteria, such as “men and women have equal opportunities for advancement” and their willingness to recommend their own employers to friends and family. .

They were also asked to rate other employers in their respective industries that stood out positively or negatively.

The final ranking also took into account a company’s overall corporate responsibility and public perception of gender equality as well as objective criteria, including representation of women on boards and positions. of management. The 400 companies that received the highest total scores made the final list.

Some targets have yet to be met, and gender-based and overall equality pay gaps have been identified at several companies on the list. Employees, investors and the public are demanding greater transparency on this topic. We continue to take this into account.

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