The rate of women being appointed to boards has also fallen from 45 per cent in 2018, down to 31.7 per cent in 2019.
The report shows there are seven companies on ASX 200 board with no women on their boards were, as of 30 September.
Those companies include:
- TPG Telecom Limited
- HUB24 Limited
- NRW Holdings Limited
- Pro Medicus Limited
- Polynovo Limited
- Silver Lake Resources Limited
- Speedcast International Limited
AICD managing director Angus Armour said these results should serve as a wake-up call to directors, investors and shareholders across the ASX 200.
“Australia is not lacking for talented and experienced women, and the profile of female directors being appointed to their first ASX 200 boards over the past two years is evidence of this,” he said.
“Boards struggling with gender diversity must challenge themselves and make commitments to do better.
"They should reflect on whether their search processes are effective and competitive enough to access the large talent pool of female directors in Australia, including whether their recruitment firms are helping them to eliminate any bias and to identify a diverse pool of candidates.”
The number of male-only boards in the ASX 200 also increased this year to seven.
Chair of the Australian Chapter for The 30% Club, Nicola Wakefield-Evans, said the results were damning.
“Just 16.6 per cent of new directors appointed to these boards were women, clearly Australia has a long way to go," she said.
The 30% Club launched as a campaign in the UK in 2010, with chairs and CEOs pushing for an increase in gender diversity on boards and senior management teams.
It launched in 2015 with the primary objective of campaigning for 30 per cent women on ASX 200 boards by the end 2018.
“We need to ensure that from when companies list, the boards comprise of at least 30 per cent female directors," Wakefield-Evans said.