Barriers to returning
Bridging the gapTo tackle the specific challenges faced by women returners, more companies are embracing flexibility. While this is a great development, business leaders must now turn their focus to how to drive change in the number of women coming back to the workforce in the first place. During the recruitment process, it’s essential to demonstrate an inclusive culture. Women need to feel confident in the employer’s ability to provide what they are looking for, and that starts with the job advert itself. Certain words and phrases can be off-putting, so it’s important that an organisation uses inclusive, gender-neutral adverts and descriptions.
When women return to work after a prolonged absence, it may sometimes appear that they are no longer qualified for the job they left. But often this is not the case. Hiring managers should investigate relevant alternative or equivalent qualifications to avoid missing out on some potentially fantastic female colleagues. Aside from formal qualifications, hiring managers should look at the valuable skills they may have developed during their time away from the workplace. Creating a supportive recruitment process for candidates returning to work will help prevent women from removing themselves from the process due to a lack of confidence. When companies are advertising, screening, and managing the recruitment process for returner candidates, a bespoke approach should be created so that it highlights the candidate’s strengths, and enables them to show potential.