CURRENT rates of progress towards gender balance in logistics suggest participation parity is more than a century away, according to director of the National Association of Women in Operations Louise Weine.

Speaking at the ALC Forum 2019, Ms Weine argued the case for “balance for better” and said gender disparity within logistics was no secret.

“I’m sure you are very much aware there is a lack of balance in the industry for now and in many operational industries,” she told the gathering.

Ms Weine cited data from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency of Australia to make her case, with logistics covered under the category of transport, coastal and warehousing.

She noted an overall increase in female representation in this sector from 25.9% in 2014 to 26.4% in 2018 and the percentage of women in key management positions was reported to have increased by 5% to 22.2%.

“There has, however, been a decrease in the representation of women in sales functions in the industry and that has decreased by 6%,” she said.

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Ms Weine also noted an increase of female promotions by 4% over the last two years “which is exciting”, however there had been an increase in the percentage of female manager resignations.

“I think it is fair to say that progress to balance has been or is patchy and slow,” Ms Weine said.

“In fact, at the current rate of progress it has been estimated that we are over 100 years to balance.

“That is 100 years. So my goal for my daughters to work into an environment where they don’t feel like they are in the minority is still quite a long way away.”

Ms Weine said she had “the great privilege of talking to men and women about this” and “hear the actions that are being taken, understanding the things that are working, the things that aren’t and getting to know the lessons that are being learned as everyone is striving to take action in this space”.

International Women’s Day is being marked with a number of events in the transport and logistics sectors.

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