East African Women in the Workforce is Vital to Sustaining and Driving Growth

9 years, 2 months ago - April 04, 2013
Regus, worlds largest provider of flexible workspace, has recently done a business survey which shows that the participation of women in the workforce is key to increasing and sustaining GDP growth, managing an existing skills gap and reducing world poverty.

Yet after maternity too many women feel forced to abandon the workforce as child care pressures prove difficult to reconcile with professional duties.

Not only are returning mothers key to economic development, but at a business-by-business level, respondents reported that hiring returning mothers helps improve productivity, possibly by lowering training and hiring costs. This result confirms previous Regus research revealing that 56% of businesses globally value part-time returning mothers because they offer skills and experience which are difficult to find in the current market and 72% believe that companies that ignore part-time returning mothers are missing out on asignificant and valuable part of the employment pool.

Interestingly, more vacation days were the least popular measure selected by respondents as critical to help women get back to work after maternity, highlighting that radical changes to work habits are required rather than additional days of rest.

Key Findings and Statistics

  • East African workers report that critical measures to encourage women back to work after maternity are:
    • Flexible working hours (97%)
    • Near-site crèche facilities (92%)
    • Option to work closer to home (90%)
    • The option to choose video-conferencing over travel at least some of the time (88%)
    • ob sharing (83%)
  • 73% of respondents believe more vacation days are the solution to getting more working mothers back into employment.
  • Yet 63% think that hiring returning mothers can improve productivity.

 

Text by Regus

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