There's reams of research supporting gender diversity and its positive impact on profitability. Still, many companies struggle to meet the changing needs of women. A recent poll by Monster.com revealed that almost two-thirds of Malaysians think companies aren’t women-friendly enough.
While a lot of this hinges on corporate culture, leadership and policies, there are some simple steps organisations can take to make female employees feel more motivated:
For young mothers, having a child and working at the same time can be a stressful experience. Generous maternity leave and support programmes to help women acclimatize to their dual responsibilities will go a long way in retaining skilled female employees.
However, given that it’s not always possible to change policies overnight -- we recommend supporting young mothers in other ways either by helping them gain access to child care or through flexible work schedules. There are various ways in which companies can support motherhood and help women employees achieve a work-life balance.
Safety of women employees
Today, women often put in long hours and organisations must take appropriate measures to increase security within and around the office premises. Companies that require women to work unusual hours must also offer transport facilities.
When considering taking a job that entails long hours, it’s important to check whether the right measures, including adequate security staff, surveillance or safe access to transport, are in place.
Companies that want to narrow the gender gap should invest in women mentorship programmes to train and develop their skills further. It’s not only instrumental in meeting the aspirations of female employees but also creates equal opportunities for all staff.
As businesses are only as good as its employees and sufficient motivation to succeed and move up the corporate ladder will ensure a thriving work culture.
Provide relevant healthcare
Just as important as mentorship is the health of employees. To ensure workers can concentrate on their job, providing sufficient healthcare is crucial. When it comes to female employees, providing coverage that includes mammograms and other health screenings is equally important. For expecting mothers, companies can even provide maternity-mentoring programmes and seminars on wellness and nutrition.