Gender equality

We are passionate about ensuring the promotion and advancement of women to the highest levels of the legal profession and at our own firm. Equally, we are determined to support our male colleagues getting a more balanced life so they can both flourish at work and at home with their families.

Gender pay gap

We were the first law firm to publish our gender pay gap data externally in 2017 – a year before the mandatory requirement to do so.

Our 2019 gender pay gap (GPG) report, available on our website and intranet, details hourly gender pay gap by role/function, including partners, fee-earners and business services, as well as pay quartiles and bonus gaps by gender. In addition to reporting the mandatory statistics, we provide a breakdown by location, job roles, working partners and offer a strong narrative with conclusions and commitments to fix the wider industry gap.

Among our lawyers, our research shows there is no gender pay gap. Reflecting on our GPG statistics, we are satisfied that all our people at the same level in the same location are paid equally, and we are committed to ensuring this year-over-year. Regarding other staff, we are not complacent and are working to address any issues.

Modern workplace

Flexible working is available and we encourage agile working, providing employees with versatile technology to work in a way that works for them and the business. This is available to all and contributes in particular to supporting people with caring responsibilities (both parents and carers) to juggle their everyday routines and work.

International Women’s Day

CMS have celebrated women’s achievements for a number of years. Taking the time to pause and celebrate progress as well as reflecting on what still needs to be done to achieve true equality in the workplace. We have collaborated with clients and most of our locations celebrate this key annual event.

International Men’s Day

International Men’s Day, supported by UNESCO, aims to improve gender relations, promoting gender equality and highlighting male role models. We mark the occasion by hosting internal events to focus on how our male colleagues are living and contributing to the inclusive culture we strive for at our firm. Past events have focused on parental/adoption leave, being a male partner and having a family, the importance of male role models and the promotion of related HR policies we have in place to support working families.

30% Club

The 30% Club was launched in the UK in 2010 with a goal of trying to ensure that there are at least 30% of women on FTSE-100 boards by the end of 2015. The 30% Club has now expanded internationally and its approach is to garner collaborative and concerted business-led efforts which can help accelerate progress towards better gender balance at all levels of organisations. Penelope Warne, The Senior Partner, is a member of the 30% Club and under her lead CMS actively participates in a variety of 30% Club initiatives.

The Athena Project

The Athena Project highlights women role models and leaders in our firm, our clients and the UK government. It was launched by CMS in 2013 in partnership with London photographer Leonora Saunders. While we have many amazing women leaders in our firm and among our clients, this does not always mean that they are visible to the business outside of those with whom they come into contact on a day-to-day basis in their roles. The exhibition features our own Penelope Warne, Dame Fiona Woolf DBE, and Helen Rodwell, alongside Baroness Scotland, Helen Grant and key clients including Rachel Empey, Eva Bishop, and Liz Walker, among others.

The Athena Project is our way to showcase the amazing achievements of these leaders and share their inspiring stories with a wider audience at CMS and beyond.