According to a JobsForHer report, India’s workforce participation of women sharply declined in 2020, owing to the pandemic. Nearly 50 percent of Indian women drop out of the corporate employment pipeline between junior and mid-levels. The need of the hour is a collaborative and continuous effort from the corporate world to ensure that women return to the workforce across levels.
JobsForHer, recently released its report – DivHersity Benchmarking 2020-2021 – that gleans insights into several aspects of women’s participation in the workforce, including the setting up of returnee programs for women.
According to the report, a lot of the returnee programs were formulated after 2015, indicating how the conversation around gender diversity has sparked change in recent years.
According to the data collated, only 50% of all companies are actively hiring women returnees, a figure that has declined by a steep 20% since 2019. Fortunately, 65% of large enterprises have introduced special initiatives to bring back women into the workforce after a career break, indicating a positive trend for the future. On the flipside, returnee programs across SMEs and start-ups have decreased to 40%.
Airbus, Intel, Verizon India, Mastercard, ThoughtWorks, and other top players got together at JobsForHer’s flagship B2B event, AccelHERate on March 5, 2021. Held online for the first time, representatives from top companies shared their most innovative practices in women returnee programs to enable women to restart their careers after a break.
54% of the companies that deployed returnee programs stated that women returnees were thriving in their roles and 56% found an increase in the number of applications from women returnees. More than half of the companies found that their recruiters were now more sensitized towards accommodating women returning to work after a break.
Speaking on the report’s findings, Neha Bagaria, Founder and CEO of JobsForHer said, “An increasing number of organizations, both large and small, are realizing that there is an urgent need to boost the percentage of women in the workforce. It is, therefore, heartening to note that a number of companies are leveraging L&D and returnee programs. Furthermore, D&I programs are ensuring that companies allow professionals to thrive in their professional journeys. There is still a long way to go to achieve an optimal playing field for women, but organizations are geared up and moving in the right direction.”