Hiring of women in middle and senior management rises to 43 pc in 2020: JobsForHer report

JobsForHer reveals numerous companies were introducing initiatives and policies that make the workplace more women-friendly with extended maternity leaves, increased hiring, etc.
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The COVID-19 pandemic has not been an easy year for anyone. Women have also borne the brunt of the pandemic, with the number of women in the workforce dwindling and reports revealing that women are overwhelmed and challenged by the work-life balance during the pandemic.

In between all this, comes a piece of good news. According to a JobsForHer report, hiring of women in middle and senior management rose to 43 percent in 2020.

The DivHERsity Benchmarking Report 2020-21, launched by JobsForHer in May 2021, analysed the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women's career advancements across the country and various levels of corporate India.

The report included data collected from over 300 companies from a wide variety of industries and sectors. The Benchmarking survey also reported some interesting numbers regarding the hiring of women at different levels.

Here are some salient features of the report

The hiring of women in mid-management to senior-level rose from 18 percent in 2019 to 43 percent in 2020 stated the Benchmarking report.

When it comes to gender equality and gender diversity, where do Indian companies stand?

Based on the JobsForHer research, 41 percent of startups surveyed for the report had achieved their goal of gender diversity hiring in 2020, establishing that several companies are adopting initiatives that help eliminate gender biases to create a more diverse workplace.

The pandemic also threw up the new normal where remote working has become a norm and is gaining traction and will impact the future of work.

There has been a rise in the number of work-from-home jobs, as well as the number of applications for them. JobsForHer’s Benchmarking Report stated that 40 percent of companies rolled out special and customised work-from-home roles post COVID-19.

In 2017, India passed the Maternity Amendment Bill that increased the right to paid maternity leave for working women from 12 weeks to 26 weeks — the third highest in the world.

The DivHERsity Report revealed that 45 percent of all companies (large enterprises, startups and SMEs) offer 6 months of maternity leave. The percentage of large enterprises that offer more than the stipulated 6 months of maternity leave increased from 14 percent in the year 2019 to 20 percent in 2020.

What’s also important is how organisations react to the pandemic.

While many Indian employers introduced new policies to build a human-centric employee experience to create a better world of work during the pandemic. However, only 13 percent of all companies – large enterprises, SMEs, and startups, offered additional paid leave for parents during the pandemic.

In a press statement, Neha Bagaria, Founder and CEO of JobsForHer said, “Organisations are finally coming to understand the significance of diversity in their workforce, and have now started implementing the same. It is heartening to see several organisations taking a step in the right direction to make the workplace more women-friendly. We are hopeful that this trend will enable and encourage more women returnees, women in tech and women in leadership roles to enter the workforce and climb the professional ladder while ensuring gender parity across all levels.”

The press release stated that The Benchmarking Report hopes to serve as a handbook for companies that are working and those that wish to work towards a common goal — to increase the participation and performance of women professionals.

Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta