Here at Vivint Solar, we want more women leading in the solar industry. We recognize that diverse companies tend to be better innovators and perform at higher levels, which is why we’ve signed the ParityPledge, a pledge to commit to gender parity in business leadership, as part of our ongoing effort to diversify our workplace. We continue to ensure equal compensation by reviewing salaries at all levels of the company to ensure women are paid comparable salaries to men in equal positions. We also consider at least one qualified woman for every leadership role, VP-level and above.
Vivint Solar’s VP of Public Policy and Government Affairs, Erica Dahl, said, “I'm proud to be part of the leadership team at Vivint Solar and I look forward to more diversity in the solar industry. Working in solar has been a rewarding career choice for me and I'm optimistic that with initiatives like the ParityPledge, more women will find their niche here too.”
Dahl was named one of Utah Business magazine’s 30 Women to Watch in 20171 and worked for 15 years in banking and health care before switching her career to the solar industry - something she and the rest of Vivint Solar’s leadership team hope more women will choose to do.
The percentage of women in solar is up from 2014 (27 percent of the solar workforce was female in 2017),2 but in 2016, women made up just 14 percent of senior management in power and utilities.3 Those numbers leave quite a bit of room for gender-parity improvement within the industry, and Vivint Solar’s commitment to the ParityPledge and other initiatives are strides in the right direction.
As our CEO David Bywater said, “We are proud to make this commitment to continue to work to raise the representation of women at the highest levels of Vivint Solar. Gender diversity creates stronger companies, and the ParityPledge complements our ongoing efforts to achieve gender parity in our organization.”
The idea behind the ParityPledge is that as more qualified women are considered for leadership roles, more women will be hired. The method has been tried and tested - the National Football League’s Rooney Rule requires teams to interview qualified minority candidates for senior management and coaching roles. After just three years of following this policy, minorities in senior NFL positions rose from 6 percent to 22 percent!4
We can’t make industry-wide change by ourselves. We are grateful to other organizations working to recruit and promote more women in solar. Women interested in solar careers can access free or discounted training through programs like GRID Alternatives’ Woman in Solar Program or Woman in Solar Energy’s partnership with Solar Energy International.5
We look forward to doing our part to close the gender gap, and benefit from the skills and expertise of many qualified women as we work towards this important goal.