Gender disparity is still a major problem in 2022. At the current rate of progress, it will take India and other countries around 100 years to achieve gender equality, according to a report of 2020-21. But, this survey has acted as shock therapy to push governments, NGOs, associations, investors, and companies into action especially.
Gender equality in the Indian workplace will require a quantum leap. This disparity cannot be resolved with tentative & incremental steps. Therefore, we must all play our part and know these trends that surely redefine the gender roles in the Indian workplace:
1. Technological Advancement
Workplaces are constantly evolving and adapting to technological advances. Automation brings its own fresh set of challenges for women in the labor market. The push towards adopting new technologies can cause about 40-160 million women to transition between jobs by 2030. To do so, they need to move towards increasing their skill sets and educational levels. On the brighter side, this is actually happening positively, and there is now an increase of 13% of women in tech companies.
2. Better Jobs in Healthcare Post Pandemic
Depending on the country, men and women tend to cluster around different jobs. In most countries, women account for 70% of the workers in the healthcare and social assistance sectors. Due to the fast pace at which the healthcare sector is growing by 2030, women may have access to 25% more job opportunities. And post-pandemic, the world has seen a surge in the immediate need for healthcare workers. In this, women are considered to be more efficient, responsible, and comfortable worldwide than men.
3. Closing Up Higher Education Gap
To gain access to these increased job opportunities, women need to learn how to work alongside automated systems. Today across the world, women make up 35% of the student body enrolled in the study of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). These figures need to grow for more women to sustain themselves in their rapidly changing workplaces.
The happy news? The figures are actually growing. Female participation has increased sharply at MA, MCs, and MCom levels. In 127 institutions of national importance, female scholars now account for 24% of the total, and the fact that eight of the sixteen have more females than males makes it even better. Therefore, women are closing the higher education gap among graduates. As a result, in 2018-2019, these were the percentage of women in Undergraduate Courses – 53.0%, MPhil Courses – 69.6%, and PhDs Courses – 41.8%. NSB, Nodia is also providing better and redefined women-centric courses in Energy Management and Human Resources.
4. Increase in Percentage Of Women On the Board
This is a focal area, as this is the easiest indicator to measure gender performance in the workplace. In India, the percentage of women on board escalated from 13% to 18% in 2020, according to a survey by SP Global. This increase will definitely help in breaking the stereotypes in an organization’s workforce. Moreover, this will encourage women to pursue their careers even further. As a result, more diversity amongst the board members will broaden women’s “professional imagination”, increasing their capacity to project themselves into redefined leadership roles
5. Government Policies to Enhance Women’s Work-Life Balance
The government of India has adopted new amendments and policies that enhance women’s access to highly-skilled and better-paying jobs and opportunities. This includes investment by the government in publicly funded, accessible, professional care services. Through these policies, women now can take paid menstruation leaves, can take care of their children while in the workplace with the help of special lounge/cabins to take care of their babies and feed them while working. Similar to these, the private sector has also started opening doors to such policies and is enforcing them positively in their workplaces.
Although we are far behind in terms of gender equality, still this cloud cast of workplace inequality can be set apart with the joint efforts of the citizens, companies, and the government. And, now is the time for commitment, to make courageous choices and move ahead with positive changes. Together, we all can surely narrow inequalities and break down these barriers.