Equity can be defined as giving everyone what they need to be successful. The IWD 2023 campaign theme seeks to forge worldwide understanding about why equal opportunities aren’t enough, and a focus on gender equity needs to be part of every society’s DNA.
International Women’s Day belongs to everyone, everywhere. Collectively, we can all help create a diverse, equitable and inclusive world.
1. How can companies strive for more equitable talent attraction?
I think this starts within job descriptions. We’ve all heard the statistics that women with the same or more qualifications as men are less likely to apply for the same positions, which comes down to wording. I think it’s important that job postings encourage you to apply even if you don’t tick every box, as this can lead to many more female applications and, ultimately, more women in the business.
2. Within your market/industry sector, what progress have you seen businesses take to progress gender equity?
Having schemes in place for people returning to work opens the door for women who might not have envisioned themselves continuing their careers after having children previously. At our ED&I event hosted by Andy Mackay, we heard from the panel about how important it is to give women a pathway back into the workforce, even if it’s in a completely different career sector.
3. What is one action companies can take to further balance their talent attraction strategies?
Offering flexible working patterns.
4. What is your top advice for making job descriptions more inclusive?
Differentiating sections on the job description between what are must-haves for the role and what are nice to haves.
5. Do you think that more companies adopting a hybrid working pattern has helped to shift pre-conceived conceptions about flexible working for women, and why?
Definitely, this is probably the one good thing to come out of the pandemic, as women no longer have to make a choice between working full-time and childcare.
6. What does being an effective ally for women look like to you?
Listening to women’s stories and implementing tangible practices in the workplace that can help to erase the biases around women in the workforce.
7. What advice would you give women in the industry you work in?
There are no roles that are “for men” vs. “for women”, even though there are some people in every industry that will have this preconceived notion.
8. International Women’s Day is also about celebrating women and their achievements. What woman/women inspire you?
The women that I work with! The recruitment industry can often be perceived as a male-dominated industry, and it’s important to have women in leadership positions who break down those biases.
9. What do you think is the most significant barrier to female leadership?
Old-fashioned views that every woman will leave their position due to childbirth. Not every woman wants to have children, women are capable of returning to the workforce after they do have children, and men are just as capable as being the sole caregiver for a child as their female counterparts, so to me, there is no excuse for leaving women out of the equation in leadership positions.