According to Shub Faujdar, the global head for training and development at Alcott Global, self-doubt is the number one factor acting against women who are looking to return to the workforce, after a career break.
But that shouldn’t be the case! In reality, they’re really in high demand by top companies all looking for the hard and soft skills they bring to the table at workforces.
In a podcast with Workforce Singapore (WSG) Shub shared: “While speaking to a regional VP of Adidas, I asked him- what are they doing to hire good talent despite a competitive labour market?”
“His reply: they’re tapping onto a very under-utilised talent pool of women returning back to work!”
They have created what he called “returnships” (a pun on internships) that are specifically targeted at this market.
While she expected this to be part of their strategy, Shub was shocked to know it was such a key pillar of Adidas’ strategy to nab top talent.
So what are “return-ships”?
These paid opportunities can last anywhere from 12 weeks to a year, Shab revealed.
“They’re catered for people coming back from career breaks, and often result in jobs for those to do well.
“Big companies and MNCs are creating these programs, and also professional alumni groups that have relationships with major employers.”
Why the interest in women, you ask? In the case of returning mothers, according to studies from Microsoft, they’re better at jobs after becoming mothers, make better team players than women without children, and their teamwork and multi-tasking skills improve as well.
On a broader spectrum, the 25 companies in top percentile of diversity, boasted 9% greater EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes,depreciation and amortization) a year compared to their competitors. All companies will certainly want to seize the benefits of having more women employees to strengthen their workforce!
These BTWW (Back-To-Work-Women) must be exceptional workers, right?
No, said Shub. There was nothing special about these women who impacted their organisations positively.
In fact, the majority of women who take a career gap and return to the workforce, did so for childcare, taking care of sick or elderly family members, to manage households, or because their families went to work overseas.
The common theme for them was needing to become very productive, empathetic and resilient to deal with these life changes and circumstances. They become loyal staff when they return to the workforce.
These assertions are all fact and data-based, Shub asserts. According to a study by an executive search term across SEA, and 51% of employers said that women who returned are beneficial to the workplace as they are:
- Hungry for a new challenge
- Have the ability to multitask
- And higher engagement levels compared to their male counterparts
These well-rounded women not only have qualifications and experience, but also perspective, something that can only come with time and a variety of life experience.
Shub concludes: “While it’s hard to put a dollar figure on perspective, employers stand to benefit from hires who can see the bigger picture and spur on progress.
“So don’t be worried about your career gap, since we’ve established that companies are ready and willing to hire you, especially if you’re a BTWW!”