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Recent Study Shows Why India Inc. Should Invest In Women Employees More

  • IWB Post
  •  September 24, 2018

According to a recent study by workplace diversity expert AVTAR Group and Working Mother Media (a United States-based gender-parity advocate), women are twice as likely to stay back in their organisations at the C-Suite level.

While women contribute to an attrition rate of just 4%, the attrition rate for male corporate executives is 8%. The study was conducted among 345 Indian employers and listed the top 100 firms based on workforce profile, flexible work, women’s recruitment and retention, benefits and work-life programmes, parental leave, company culture, and safety and security.

“With extremely volatile talent markets, this goes on to show that companies that invest in developing and growing women into leadership [positions] are more likely to retain their talent,” the study said.

The study also found that besides leadership roles, attrition levels are also lower among women in several other positions.

The top 100 companies for gender diversity in India employ 441,000 women. Of these, 282,000 work for the top 10 employers. These firms made bigger strides for women in the workforce than the rest, be it in appointing female business heads or having formal programmes for second-career women and new mothers returning after a hiatus.

The high retention rates come from mentoring and skill-building programmes as well as the fact that all the firms in the Best Companies for Women in India ranking provide flexible working arrangements such as flexi-time and telecommuting. Remote work options were available at 77% of the companies.

Despite these strides, the pace of hiring women has not been as impressive in Indian corporates. The study report mentioned that between the years 2017 and 2018, their share of all new hires slipped from 36% to 33.5%, the report found.

However, the overall women’s representation at the 100 best companies has been steadily rising, reaching over 31% in 2018 from 25% back in 2016, data shows.

Speaking of the middle and senior management levels, men were 3% more likely than women to be promoted but at the C-suite level, promotion rates of men and women are almost equal at 5.3% and 5.6%.

The 100 best companies for women in India work fully to reintegrate and retain new mothers. In most of these listed companies, the average duration of a fully paid maternity leave was 27 weeks that is slightly longer than the 26-week period prescribed by law.

Many workplaces also provide formal support to counter postpartum stress and depression through buddy mother networks and pre-scheduled stay-in-touch days, among other things. And, so, these companies posted a low 12% maternity attrition on average, which means that 88% of women resumed full-time work after their maternity break.

The report stated, “This is [a] validation of the fact that the best companies are intentionally investing in the emotional well-being of returning mothers.” 

H/T: Quartz India

Image used for representational purpose

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