Even though the business case for workplace diversity is crystal clear, companies continue to struggle to level the gender equity playing field. Creating a diverse workforce starts with reducing bias in the hiring process, but the work doesn’t stop there. In order to retain the talented women that you recruit, you need to have a culture and policies that support them. Here are a number of changes you can make to invest in your women employees:
Flexible Schedules: A flexible schedule is more than allowing employees to work 8am to 4pm vs. 9am to 5pm. A truly flexible schedule allows employees to work when and where they want when life throws them a curveball. Whether it’s a sick child, sick parent, or a mid-work day dance recital, flexible schedules allow for work-life balance that working mothers (and all other employees) appreciate. The foundation for offering flexible schedules starts with a performance-based culture where employees are valued for the results they produce, not the hours spent at their desk.
Women Leaders: Promoting women to leadership positions shows junior-level women that they have a future with your company. Women in leadership positions can be valuable role models and mentors to younger staff. If women represent a large percentage of your leadership team, celebrate it and use it as a recruiting tool to attract women to your organization.
Paternity Leave: Offering maternity leave is a given, but paternity leave can be just as important to women. Men need to have an equal responsibility and opportunity to be caregivers so that these responsibilities don’t default to women. Providing paternity leave benefits gives women the option to both be mothers and get back to their professional careers.
Sexism: Take a no-tolerance approach to sexism. This goes beyond requiring employees to read policies on discrimination and harassment and requires proactive education. All employees should receive training and education on unconscious biases and feel empowered to speak out against it. A culture of equality requires open dialogue as well as swift corrective action. If sexism is occurring in the workplace, employees need to know what avenues they can take to report it and be confident that company leaders will take action.
While these changes will help you retain women employees, it’s essential to also consider pay equity. The gender pay gap still exists in many roles and industries and correcting this inequality is necessary for creating a diverse and inclusive organization.
Our platform includes time and leaves management with customizable options to embed company policies in the software for tracking and analysis. Organizations can create mentorship/succession planning programs, reporting structures, and training all within the HRIS. Along with powerful analytics, we provide support to organizations seeking a review of existing company policies.
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