HR Policy Development : Attracting Top Female Talent

Gender imbalance, sexual harassment, and equal treatment have been significant issues for years. Nothing can change overnight, but I see employers now opening their doors to the most valuable candidate, regardless if it’s a woman or a man.

The companies we work with ask us to recruit candidates on their behalf and are, more and more, becoming more inclusive in the way they approach hiring. Coming from Italy where gender is still critical during a recruiting process, this is a refreshing shift in priorities.

The most frequent gender discrimination is due to pregnancy and wage parity

Two of the most frequent issues we see regarding gender imbalance in hiring is discrimination for fear of lost work (due to pregnancy) and the wage gap between genders. The first has become less and less prominent over time.

I see employers hiring pregnant women even when they are close to their due date, which is something that it didn’t use to happen in the past. Pregnancy was often a stated deterrent for employers in hiring women. We are now starting to see more flexible workplaces, valuing high-impact employees over potential interruptions and embracing the fact that employees have healthy, full lives outside of work.

How are companies changing their hiring systems to accommodate right now?

Offering flexible hours and a good work-life balance is an aspect that has seen visible improvement over the years. A woman, a mother that needs to be at home with her babies or young children is allowed to do so. In the past, it was much more challenging to find a supportive and flexible employer.

Several companies here in Vancouver recognize the need to rebalance gender in the workplace and bring the diversity it offers. These companies have been paying attention to attracting more female individuals in technical roles such as engineer and developers in the tech world. It’s especially helpful to have a recruitment agency that shares your values. At Goldbeck we are committed to hiring experts in their field and encourage diversity in our own company, reflecting those same values in the way we source candidates.

There are many benefits to broadening expectations for hiring and employee lifestyles

That said, there is still a long way to go. The disparity often increase when it comes to higher level, management roles. When we are hiring for those roles we should keep in mind that different candidates may have a different approach to problem solving and we should consider all perspectives without being biased by the concept of “men” or “women”. In 2018 this is just a concept based on obsolete ideas, and we encourage being neutral and open-minded when it comes to hiring a candidate, no matter the gender. What should count is what that person can bring to the table and what impact that individual can make on your organization.

In Canada, women make $0.87 for every dollar men make. As well as ensuring we are hiring the right person for the role, we have a responsibility to ensure we are treating our employees fairly and with respect once they are in them.

Improving your hiring practices to attract more female talent? Focus on flexible and supportive work environments, treat your employees fairly and with respect, and be open-minded to new approaches in your organization.