Indian Companies shifting focus on Gender Balance
A Gender-Diverse workforce permits an Organization to serve an increasingly diverse Client Base
As per a study done by economists based on statistics by Confederation of Indian Industry in 2011, Women’s participation in the workforce was lowest in India among the BRICS nations. The Workforce Participation Rate (WPR) for women in rural India stood at 30% as compared to 15.4% in urban India. Various reasons for this cited by economists and sociologists were: dropping out of higher education, raising children, family pressure and a social bias.
But winds of change are beginning to blow. Here are some companies which are creating a more welcoming environment for women.
Flipkart, the Indian e-commerce giant, has become the first online company to roll out a brand new Maternity Benefits program which includes an extended maternity leave of 24 weeks plus four months of flexi-working hours with full pay, and, if needed, one-year career break without pay. Additionally, they provide a dedicated parking space to their women employees who are expecting and have tie-ups with day-care centers for crèche support.
Other reputed companies like CitiBank, InMobi, Vodafone, Google, Accenture, HUL and Johnson & Johnson also provide extended maternity leaves and benefits to cut attrition by 20-30%, as research has shown that most women quit their jobs after childbirth.
Other notable initiatives taken by organizations in India in hiring and retaining women employees are –
- Career 2.0 is a programme by Genpact to hire qualified women who had taken a career break, at middle and senior management positions. Genpact will offer flexible, customized workdays to encourage such women to revive their career. “There are qualified women who perhaps do not know how to make a career comeback. We are more than happy to leverage their talent. Our approach is that through the use of Genpact policies, we give these women flexibility and full-time roles,” said Piyush Mehta, who leads Genpact’s global HR function. (http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/)
- Vodafone has a Pathways to Success career series which helps women in the middle management to focus on their careers and make the right choices in sync with their life stages. (http://www.geekzone.co.nz/content.asp?contentid=18357)
- Accenture Vahini is a networking forum at Accenture India Pvt. Ltd, offers mentoring and counselling options for women employees across all levels of the company and other companies as well. (https://www.accenture.com/in-en/vaahini.aspx)
- Coca-Cola India, HCL Technologies Ltd, Infosys Ltd, Paharpur Business Center and Software Technology Incubator Park, Jindal Stainless Ltd and Wipro Ltd are the six Indian companies committed to the Global Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs). These principles provide guidance to adopt workplace policies to support women’s empowerment. (http://asiapacific.unwomen.org/)
This is a clear indication of corporate India shifting its focus on becoming gender balanced because of the clear business sense it makes. Finding talent is becoming harder and excluding a significant part of the workforce i.e. women, is a handicap that businesses can do without. Women are known to have better concentration skills, patience and a caring nature and all these traits directly contribute to the bottom line of a company.
Research and Experience across Industries has revealed –
– Organizations which maintain a well-managed & diverse workforce outperform those organizations which don’t.
– Men and women bring a diversity of viewpoints, ideas, and market insights, which enables better problem solving, ultimately leading to superior performance at the business unit level.
– A gender-diverse workforce provides easier access to resources, such as various sources of credit, multiple sources of information, and wider industry knowledge.
– Gender diversity helps companies attract and retain more talented women.
With a diminishing yet challenging social bias in our country today, it is important for any woman jobseeker to ensure that they find organizations which recognize their needs and provide equal career opportunities. MeraJob.in recognizes the work culture brought about by women and the kind of work environment they desire and deserve by creating their SmartProfile™ which captures their essential skills and preferences and connecting them to the jobs best suited for them.
If you are running a MSME company or start-up, creating an environment which nurtures the participation of women and provides equal opportunities is the key to your talent acquisition program. To find out more about how you can use MeraJob.in – India’s 1st job matching portal to hire women for front-end functions, let us know or call at 092-666-22-544.
“A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.”– Diane Mariechild
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