The representation of women in the Public Service workforce continues at a high level, with 61.1% of employees being female at 30 June 2019. This is the highest level since first measured in 2000 (56.2%). This compares with only 47.6% in the overall New Zealand labour force in the year to June 2019 (from Stats NZ’s Household Labour Force Survey). The type of work in the Public Service may partly explain this high representation as many Public Service occupations such as ‘social workers’, ‘case workers’ and ‘clerical and administration workers’ also have a high representation of women in the wider labour market.

Female representation at the senior leadership level is lower than the proportion of women in the Public Service, but has increased strongly over the past decade. As at 30 June 2019, the percentage of women in the top three tiers of senior management was 49.6%, up from 37.8% in 2009. If current trends continue, the Public Service will reach 50% female representation in senior leadership by around the end of 2019 (see following graph).

Last modified: