What 78% of working women really want?

by Nikki Temkin
Working women. Celebrate the strength and resilience of working mothers
Reading Time: 3 minutes

RecruitMyMom recently released the 2024 Working Womens’ Report and it held some fascinating insights. BYY offers some of the report’s fascinating findings, whether you’re an employer or an employee.

Key insights on working women :

  • Career aspirations: 78% of working women express a desire to advance in their careers. Lack of internal opportunities, lack of mentorship and networking and pay discrimination emerge as the primary hurdles to career progression.
  • Job application priorities: when women apply for jobs, salary is the foremost consideration. Plus, specific benefits hold significance, with paid maternity leave surprisingly not ranking high among desired benefits.
  • Flexible work arrangements: 80% of women have dependents and embracing flexible work arrangements aligns with the realities of modern life, contributing to talent retention.
  • Career pauses: 49% of respondents had taken a career pause at least once, emphasising the normalcy of career pauses on a women’s work journey. 49% have had a career pause ranging from motherhood, mental health, retrenchments and further studies. 95% returned to work after the career pause.
  • Work location: 59% of respondents prefer hybrid working arrangements, 33% prefer remote working, and 8% prefer solely in-office work. Younger women with dependants have a marginal preference for remote working, and women in townships have a marginal preference for solely in-office working.
  • Working hours: 55% of women, regardless of age, seek full-time hours. This finding comprises 32% seeking full-time hours and 23% seeking full-time hours with a reduced work week. The remaining 45% of women seek reduced hours per day.

Other important information :

  • The report reveals that 45% of women are actively seeking new job opportunities.
  • In South Africa, the female workforce lags, with only 15% of executives in the entire executive population of all JSE-listed companies being female.
  • 71% of single women prefer full-time work, and considering that 20% of the respondents are single, this enlightens us on why the need for full-time work is higher than expected. 47% of married women and 45% of widowed women prefer part-time hours.
  • 92% of women want to work at all stages of life, and despite the prevailing thinking, most want to work full-time in a hybrid manner that delivers financial reward.
  • Women are qualifying at higher rates than men: the majority (52%) of people with post-secondary education are women, and within STEM 47% of African universities’ STEM graduates, undergraduates and postgraduates, are women. Female candidates attained 66.4% of the 2023 NSC matric distinctions.
  • 38% of working women in South Africa are the sole household income earners, making financial independence vital for them and their families. Furthermore, 21% of sole-income earners are married and financially support their spouses/partners.
  • Employers need to proactively adopt remote or hybrid work policies to attract and retain top calibre female talent. Embracing flexibility positions you as a progressive and inclusive employer.
  • There are several global studies and trends that suggest a broader appeal for reduced working hours and flexible arrangements amongst professionals, including senior women. The global shift towards flexible work, with many employees expressing a desire for continued flexible work arrangements, is a sentiment that is likely to resonate strongly with senior women seeking a better work-life balance and greater control over their schedules.

Read the full report on https://www.recruitmymom.co.za

Are you a working woman? Tell us your coping tips how to juggle work and motherhood in comments

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