As stated by ‘Bridging the Skills Gap – Towards an Equal Workplace’, a comprehensive research report by NTT DATA – a digital business and IT services leader, and NLB Services – leading technology and digital talent solutions provider, India contributes nearly 31.7% of the world’s total STEM graduates while cementing its position as one of the largest STEM job marketplaces in the world. The Indian women workforce (nearly 56%) to is gearing up for ambitious career opportunities.
The study surveyed a total sample size of 250 employers from different organizations of 12 sectors spread across 15 Tier-1 and Tier-2 cities. Furthermore, the study surveyed 500 women employees from organizations of various sizes, sectors, and cities.
As per the report, women employees in STEM look forward to certain work benefit expectations from employers. They expect prioritization of work-life balance, family-friendly policies, and an environment full of learning and development. Some of the key expectations are stated below:
- Flexible/remote work policies – Flexible remote work policies can be particularly beneficial for women in STEM fields. These policies can help to address some of the challenges that women face in these fields, such as the lack of work-life balance, and difficulties of balancing family responsibilities with work commitments. 51% of women in STEM respondents of the survey showed keen interest in availing this work benefit from their employers. Both married and unmarried women have similar expectations for flexible/remote work policies.
- Maternity/Paternity policies – Maternity and paternity policies are critical for supporting women in STEM fields who choose to start families. These policies can help to ensure that women can take the time they need to care for their newborns without sacrificing their careers or facing discrimination. 45% of women in STEM respondents of the survey showed keen interest in availing this work benefit from their employers. Of that, 61% of married women have a higher expectation for maternity and paternity policies.
- Learning and development – Learning and development opportunities are important for women in the STEM field as they can help promote career advancement, increase confidence and skills, and provide networking opportunities. Organizations can help to promote gender equity in STEM and create a more inclusive workplace culture. Around 44% of women in STEM respondents of the survey showed keen interest in availing this work benefit from their employers. STEM courses/fields such as Computer Programming, Web Development, Analytics, AI and ML, Cybersecurity, and User Experience (UX) Design are most preferred by women.
- Mentorship opportunities and innovation – Mentorship and innovation opportunities can be particularly valuable for women in STEM because they can help to address some of the challenges that women face in these fields, such as lack of representation, isolation, and difficulty advancing their careers. 44% of unmarried women employees in STEM have a higher expectation for Mentorship opportunities whereas 47% of them have a strong inclination towards innovation opportunities.