We believe that a successful, sustainable business is one in which everyone can thrive and advance, and that our people are key to realising our strategic ambitions. Accelerating gender diversity is thus a strategic imperative for Imperial. It is integral to our goal to achieve a workforce that represents the demographics in our countries of operation and ensuring our relevance in our markets. It offers a competitive advantage because diverse teams with varied experiences, backgrounds and styles are better able to meet the needs of a diverse client base. Empowering, advancing and investing in women enables us to deliver optimal value to all our stakeholders.
Our Global Women's Forum is one of the initiatives that Imperial is leveraging to ensure that gender equality and the empowerment of women are prioritised across all of our operations and regions. With representatives from around the world, the forum's mission is to support the development and the advancement of women across the group, across the world. Its focus areas include mentoring and training, graduate programmes, industry positioning and targets for women in senior leadership roles. Creating an empowering and enabling culture for women to grow, motivate and network with each other across the group is also a key focus. Regional representatives meet quarterly to progress strategic initiatives and identify global issues impacting women.
Imperial's gender diversity achievements to date include exceeding our target for hiring women. In 2018, 22.4% of new hires across the organisation were women, surpassing the target of 20%. Women representation at top management level was 13% and at senior management level 6% respectively. We will continue to accelerate gender diversity to transform our succession pipeline with female candidates for executive and management positions.