top of page

Karen Ho

Director General


There is clear evidence that gender equity in the workplace benefits women, their families, the community, and the economy. A diverse and inclusive workforce that is reflective of the wider community leads to greater productivity, innovative thinking, and high quality service delivery. I am proud to lead an agency committed to improving social, economic and employment outcomes for women through agile training and workforce development initiatives, as well as improving employment outcomes for women within our own workforce.

I chose to join CEOs for Gender Equity to promote the importance of gender diversity and inclusion in the workplace and give visibility to my commitment to gender equity. As a leader, I have a responsibility for instilling a safe and inclusive workplace culture and influencing others to proactively engage in practices to recruit, develop and retain diverse talent. I believe together we can achieve genuine change through shared experiences and proactively driving gender equity outcomes.

The Department of Training and Workforce Development has made positive progress towards gender equity and ensuring women’s skills, achievements and strengths are valued in the workplace. Over the past five years, we have increased the representation of women in the Senior Executive Service from 36% to 57%, and have also achieved gender parity in our Corporate Leadership Group.

We are working hard to remove unconscious bias from our recruitment and selection processes, and addressing barriers to the recruitment and progression of women. We understand the importance of building the next generation of female leaders and we actively support women to undertake a range of development opportunities, including leadership programs and acting opportunities.

We continue to create a safe and respectful organisational culture where everyone can thrive by promoting awareness and understanding of gender equality and respectful behaviour in the workplace. We celebrate the achievements of our female leaders at all levels and are committed to supporting flexible working arrangements that provide everyone with flexibility to meet work-life demands.

As a Department we have come a long way in improving employment outcomes for women, but we still have a long way to go. Over the coming years, we will continue to drive gender equity outcomes by working on reducing the gender pay gap, supporting return to work programs for women returning from parental leave, and undertaking an organisational self-assessment of existing workplace practices to identify key actions to improve gender equity and respect in the workplace.

Improving gender equity requires a collective and sustained effort, a different way of doing things and stronger accountability. I am committed to championing gender equity and providing an inclusive culture where everyone can thrive.


CEO Conversation.


bottom of page