In honor of Women’s History month, we are reviewing how to attract and retain women in the workforce.
The pandemic affected women disproportionately for a variety of reasons and by the end of 2021, only 57.5 percent of adult women were working. This set women back in representation in the workforce, as well as gender and pay equality.
There are advantages to having women in the workforce at all levels. They are enrolling in college and graduating at higher rates than men, gaining valuable skills. They provide a fresh viewpoint and new ideas that can enhance decision-making and problem solving. This kind of diversity can promote a more hospitable corporate culture, and will increase a company’s standing with future candidates of any gender.
Here are a few practical areas to consider to recruit women to your workforce.
- Equal Pay – Transparent and fair compensation is not gender based. Companies that prioritize equal pay often have better recruitment and retention and better employee engagement, which leads to better profitability.
- Benefits and Perks that Support Women – Women want benefits that address family needs and account for the fact that not every family looks the same. Flexibility and mental health initiatives can also help women return and thrive.
- Inclusive Workplace Culture – Offer equal opportunities for advancement and professional development. Value ideas from everyone. Ensure a safe environment, free from harassment.
- Remove Barriers to Women in Leadership – Create apprenticeship and mentorship opportunities and value differences in leadership styles.
Recruiters need to reassess their hiring process on a regular basis in order to attract women candidates.
- Make sure that job descriptions and communications with candidates are written in inclusive language.
- Remove unnecessary job requirements, especially education requirements if they are not needed.
- If you use AI technology in your hiring process, make sure you understand how the algorithms work and what type of candidates the AI tends to favor.
- Post jobs where the applicants hang out, not just in the traditional job boards. Make use of social media platforms to recruit and communicate.
As part of the reassessment, set up metrics to measure the success of your efforts. Look at the data. Remember that your company culture didn’t evolve overnight and won’t change that quickly, either. Look for and build on successes in your strategy. Make changes to what doesn’t work, and keep at it.
Professional recruiters can partner with you in your quest to attract and retain women and all underrepresented groups. They know where to find the candidates and have current information on what candidates are looking for from an employer as well as competitive compensation packages. A specialist in recruiting for your industry can lighten the load on your HR department and help hire the right talent for your open positions.