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Gender bias still prevalent at Indian workplaces: Study

By Niranjan Mudholkar,

Added 22 February 2016

According to the TeamLease report the onus for transformation rests as much on society as it does on policy measures.

Who's behind the mask - a man or a woman? Does it matter! Pic for representation only

Gender equality initiatives at India Inc are from a compliance perspective rather than bridging the gap states TeamLease report. According to the report, more than 72% of women feel gender discrimination is still prevalent at workplace.

They attribute the unfairness to privileges men receive both at organizational and societal level, pro men practices, male dominated peer eco-system, and skewed career advancement pathways.

A detailed study on the magnitude, reasons and impact of gender bias on labour market, the report bursts the myth surrounding urban working women. As per the report the workforce participation of rural women is far higher than urban women. While only 20% of the women from urban areas entered the work, women constituted 30% of the workers in rural areas.

According to the report the onus for transformation rests as much on society as it does on policy measures. It attributed the under representation to socially induced stereotypical choice of higher education. More than 61% of women choose non professional courses reducing their chance to get gainful employment opportunities. From a sectoral perspective, though women participation is far from desired, with a representation of 6% and 5% at senior management roles BFSI and Software have a better career funnel for women.  Meanwhile, Manufacturing & Engineering and Auto were the least receptive sectors.

Further from organisational initiatives perspective, according to the report there is a glaring mismatch between the programmes corporate are proposing and what the women employees are looking forward for.

While organisations perceived initiatives like flexi time, leadership training, sexual harassment policies etc to be a game changer, majority of women employee felt these policies required greater boost. For flexitime employees felt it needs to be increased from the current 27% to 47%. The study also pressed on the need for wage parity to make corporate India more conducive for women workforce.

(Continued on the next page)

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