The Automotive 30% Club Inspiring Woman Award 2024

Congratulations to The Automotive 30% Club Inspiring Woman Award 2024: Alison Ross MBE. 

Alison Ross is an incredible role model as a woman with a career at Auto Trader, spanning across the two traditionally male dominated industries of automotive and technology. A real trailblazer who had to navigate the challenges of carving her career path during a time of limited positive action taking place and the absence of role models for her to be inspired from. 

Her purpose is now to open that opportunity to as many people from all backgrounds as possible. She believes we have an incredible opportunity for our industry, for the UK and that we need to work together to unlock its promise as an engine of social mobility and prosperity for all.

Ali has overcome many challenges throughout her career, but the three big ones would be; social mobility based on her humble beginnings, starting in technology at a time when tech was not valued in the way it is today, and nearly always being the only woman in the room.

She has also led the strategies to establish Auto Trader as a leading employer of choice for women and our diversity and inclusion strategy. Our vision is to keep evolving our business to be representative of the communities we operation in and for all our people to feel included and can be the best they can be. Alison has elevated our strategy for a culture of inclusion to the highest level at Auto Trader and set six Cultural KPIs that are of similar importance with all the financial KPIs, one of the only FTSE100 businesses in the UK to have such commitments.

Under Alison’s strategic direction and dedication we have achieved incredible results against those KPIs

  • More than 90% of our people consistently state they are proud to work for Auto Trader
  • A board that was entirely male to one where women are in the majority
  • From 30% of women in leadership positions to over 42%
  • From 30% of women in the organisation to 43% overall 
  • Increase in our ethnic diversity from 10% to 16% 
  • Significantly reduced our carbon footprint and on track to achieve our Net Zero commitments by 2040 

Being a mentor and coach to several women in the business throughout the past decade has been another way that Alison has contributed to advancing women’s careers at Auto Trader. Alison’s team led the creation of a coaching and mentoring programme that has helped hundreds of women in the business develop themselves personally and professionally. She has also led the creation of the Diverse Talent Accelerator Programme of Auto Trader, a yearlong multimodule programme aiming to accelerate the career of under-represented groups; a significant number of women have participated resulting in various promotion opportunities for them.