Getting Women Back into the Workforce After the Pandemic

Millions of women left the workforce when the coronavirus pandemic began. Most needed to care for their children, parents, or other family members. The closing of schools, daycares, and adult care centers made it difficult for these women to fulfill their personal responsibilities while holding a job.

Although the pandemic continues, it is time to begin getting women back into the workforce. They help companies increase engagement, productivity, and retention. Hiring women also results in greater diversity, stronger innovation, and a better bottom line.

Implement these tips to encourage women to return to the workforce after the pandemic.

Offer Micro-Credential Programs

Micro-credentials are short-term, highly focused learning courses that take days or weeks to finish. They result in a skill or certification in significantly less time than it would take to complete a typical degree program.

These micro-credentials can help with upskilling, career advancement, and career changes. Companies that offer these educational opportunities form stronger connections with their employees or job seekers. This can increase the number of women in the organization’s candidate pool and workforce.

Provide Flexibility

Women desire more control over their time. This lets them effectively fill their personal needs and the needs of their children. This is especially important as schools may continue to be remote or hybrid and daycare options may be limited.

Offering remote or hybrid work options, a flexible schedule, and a significant amount of PTO encourages women to return to work. Managers also should talk with their employees about any accommodations they may need to fit their individual needs. This lets more women hold jobs while taking care of their families.

Change Company Culture

Many organizations are biased against women who choose to have families. Rather than continuously performing and producing, these women take time off to have children. This changes their experiences and perspectives on what it means to be a dedicated employee. It especially impacts the number of women rising to C-level positions.

Working to eliminate this bias encourages women to earn promotions to leadership roles. One way to accomplish this is by encouraging leaders to have ongoing discussions with the women on their teams. These conversations need to be about women’s pain points related to career development and solutions to their problems. This input may be gathered through a combination of employee surveys, individual meetings, idea-generating forums, and women-focused employee resources groups (ERGs).

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