Women are quickly closing the gender gap in the Australian workforce. This is the result of numerous incentives by both the government and the private sector. There has been a concerted push to get more women to get new jobs as well as keep the existing ones. According to a recent survey by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, less than half of the workforce is made up of women.
Although this may be true, the gender pay gap is still wide. It continues to attract heated controversy. Furthermore, labor regulations have been updated to encourage more participation from women.
Gail Kelly recently went on the offensive in a recent interview and prevailed on business leaders to come up with solutions. She believes flexibility in the workplace will maximize productivity from working parents. Gail Kelly is an influential woman business leader and the former CEO of Westpac, the second biggest bank in Australia and New Zealand. She is one of the best paid female business executives in the country.
Leading by example, she is the first woman to head a major bank in the country. Gail Kelly is also a mother of four. She understands the challenges of trying to balance family life with a demanding corporate career. Businesses, as well as the state, have an obligation to make it easier for parents to be more productive at work. They can create a favorable environment for parents to feel in control of their lives.
Women have an enormous economic impact in the country. The government is encouraging employers to boost the participation of women in the workplace. This is by providing conducive frameworks and incentives. It is up to companies to exploit this untapped potential.
Better Childcare System
There is a need to address the childcare system. The system must work towards making childcare more available, inexpensive and flexible. It is prohibitively expensive for working mothers. Women focus better when they know their child is safe and healthy. This can only be achieved with quality childcare services. The childcare payment system should also be streamlined. In addition, new mothers should have a clear path back to work.
Besides addressing the childcare and support system, the government is also looking at other ways to ensure more participation. This includes supporting women innovators and entrepreneurs. Grace Lever reviews show that there is a high demand for practical entrepreneurial support as well as targeted career coaching options for women.
The state is also encouraging employers to embrace diversity and flexibility in the workplace. There are fundamental social reasons to enable women enjoy better economic security. Women are more likely to retire earlier and experience a reduced quality of life due to lower living standards.
In addition, the state hopes to reduce discrimination and related barriers. The incentives also promise to impart more skills to women to enable them to stay competitive. Businesses can also highlight the unique strengths of female business leaders. Women such as Gail Kelly and Irene Natividad, the chairperson of Corporate Women Directors International, are leading the battle for more participation. This leadership and mentoring is meant to boost the number of women taking leadership positions in business.
It is estimated that when women participation in the workplace equals that of men, it will inject over $25 billion into the country’s economy every year. Productivity will go up. This is a direct benefit to the family unit as well as the overall economy. It will narrow the gender gaps in participation and pay. It will also reduce the barriers to having more women in the workplace.
While the government has the lead on policy frameworks and empowerment, the business community will provide the much-needed opportunities.