Recent report found by World economic forum (WEF) has ranked India 108th out of 187th in the gender gap index as it ranks 142nd out of 149 countries in the economic opportunity and participation. In a report published last year from McKinsey & Company it was discovered that only about 25 per cent of India’s workforce is female. It breaks my heart to go through such stats & has urged me to put down my thoughts.
Apparently the current discrepancy that lies in the workforce of India is due to the obstacles created by our culture, politics and economy which don't make it any easy to bridge the prevalent gender gap. Furthermore, being the world's largest democracy and the second largest populated country with over 1.3 billion people it has become a daunting task. There still exists the issue of cultural bias against women to be working in many sections of the society, especially when after marriage most women are expected to remain at home.
Considering that we have the largest young workforce as compared to any place in the world and are also the fastest growing economy, it is a matter of worry that we are not creating equal job opportunities for all the genders and therefore not fully harnessing the available potential. Despite the rise in educational levels, the unemployment levels are still increasing.
In interest of the society, women work-forces in urban and rural areas require a platform to grow in public and private sectors. Similarly, we require immediate actions to improve the situation in the field of education, up-skilling of talent, institute- collaborations and provision of work flexibility to boost the creation & availability of job opportunities for women & their empowerment.
To overcome some of these challenges, we at Elements are driving an initiative by the name of HerColleagues which tackles such issues with a systematic approach. The idea is to solve the case of a missing woman (at work) at all levels. This can be achieved by grooming them about vocational education, corporate policies, upgrading the skills of working women, removing social stigma, providing flexible working hours or work from home opportunities and so on, proving to be a means to an end.
There is clearly a lot of work to be done yet. It will certainly take more actions than one to achieve the ultimate goal of improving the gender workforce gap in India. Let’s all join hands to revamp the situation and make a better future for our country.