India Inc favours men over women for jobs, finds survey

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MUMBAI : Even as progressive companies have taken up gender equality at the workplace on a war footing, research reveals a rather bleak picture on the ground. In Randstad’s Workmonitor survey, which studied employee sentiments around this topic, 55% of the overall survey respondents from India indicated that men are favoured over women when two candidates are equally qualified for the same job at their workplace.

The survey stated that 61% of male and 47% of female respondents agreed to this statement, while globally 70% of the survey respondents stated this. When asked to reveal their preference, 70% of the male respondents from India mentioned that they would prefer a male as direct manager and, in reality, a vast majority (87%) actually have one currently. However, the figures deviate among women respondents, with only 41% of the female respondents saying they prefer a male as direct manager, with 50% actually having one currently.

Paul Dupuis, MD & CEO, Randstad India, said, “Gender diversity may be high on the agenda for India Inc today, but what I believe is that diversity is not just a goal or a guideline, it is a business imperative. All the corporate and government initiatives are just a start – the real change can happen only when we succeed in addressing the deep-rooted mind sets about the role of women at work.”

Dupuis said, “It is a proven fact that diverse organisations perform better as this offers an assortment of knowledge and skills. An objective and ethical organisational philosophy that values an individual for the competencies they bring to the table is critical. After all, a country has truly evolved only when diversity in its true spirit is promoted across, with corporates setting the benchmarks, creating a conducive work environment for women. This will definitely help India reap rich rewards of economic growth as well.”
The constant highlighting of the gender pay-gap issue notwithstanding, the study found 91% of the respondents from India believed that at their workplace, both men and women in similar roles were rewarded equally. This is much higher than the global average of 79%. A significant majority (88%) also felt both men and women are equally supported when asking for a promotion.
On a more positive note, team diversity was highly appreciated by all employees globally, who participated in the study. A large majority (89%) of the respondents from India said that they prefer to work in a gender-diverse team, while 86% believed that gender-diverse teams perform and achieve better results than single-gender teams.
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