Female leaders are demanding better women in leadership mentoring programmes as almost all believe the current initiatives offered by their companies are ineffective with 95% stating that gender discrimination and gender-bias remains an issue in their offices, according to REED.
The specialist recruiter asked almost 150 female leaders about gender discrimination in the workplace and issues surrounding equality, finding that there is strong support for mentoring programmes, to help more women to gain senior positions. A further third (36%) of respondents want better family support and flexible working options to help with their work-life balance and career progression.
Despite advancements being made in gender equality, female employees still feel they are lacking the support network and role models to achieve senior positions, with a further 30% stating they would like more women representatives on the board. Additionally, just over a quarter (27%) said they would like to see increased advocacy from senior leaders and board members displaying commitment to gender equality.
In offering ways to tackle this discrimination, four in 10 (38%) respondents stated they would like more visibility and acceptance of flexible working options.
Chris Adcock, director of Reed HR, commented: “Although massive steps have been made in creating a more equal and fair working environment for all employees, the results from this survey show a clear and resounding response that female employees still feel that gender bias is an issue in their workplace.
“Not only is this unacceptable, by not taking steps to remove these biases, companies are also preventing themselves from tapping into a huge talent pool. By working to remove unconscious biases in the workplace and the recruitment process, companies can expect greater competition for roles and more diverse representation in the workplace, which in turn, will contribute to improved results.”
Adcock continued: “For those we asked, the solution lies in mentoring and people and policy driving change. While the majority of organisations do offer mentoring schemes for employees, there is still a disparity in the number of male and female role models in senior positions. Businesses that look to resolve this issue will reap the long-term rewards with lower employee turnover, more consistency across the business and a stable and equal platform for the company to grow.