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PwC: Women and International Jobs

Category: Blogger's Corner, gender diversity, career, Finance, Opportunity

PwC: Women and International Jobs

Common misconceptions that men are more likely than women to want to work abroad have created barriers to the development of women in financial services and to the growth of the industry, says a new PwC report, ‘Women of the world: Aligning gender diversity and international mobility in Financial Services’.

Nearly half (45%) of women surveyed believe the biggest barrier to their ability to work abroad is the perception within their company that women with children do not wish to do so. Furthermore, almost a third (30%) believe that entrenched mind-sets favouring men for international assignments are a barrier to opportunities for women to work abroad.

In an industry in which 70% of CEOs see the limited availability of skills as a threat to their growth prospects, financial services companies are missing out on the advantage of moving talent to meet demand. 42% of women say their organisation has no clear view of employees who would be willing to be internationally mobile when, in fact, more women (66%) than men (60%) say they would be happy to work abroad at any stage in their career.

Nearly nine in ten (88%) of women working in financial services believe that international experience is critical to furthering their career, but only 13% say their employer has a programme in place that positions international assignments as a core part of an employee’s career plan.

Jon Terry, PwC’s Financial Services HR consulting leader, commented:

“The CEOs of today and of the future are expected to possess significant international experience. Financial firms need to broaden the pool of talent from which their international workforce is drawn or they risk continuing the industry’s lack of diversity in top roles.

“International mobility should be a key strategic priority for financial firms, helping to bridge skills gaps and develop future leaders. In an ever more globalised financial marketplace, international mobility can improve firms’ ability to reach into fast growth markets and forge the global mind-set needed by today’s business leaders.”

“To their detriment, firms are choosing international assignees from a talent pool that is far narrower than necessary. Moreover, the lack of transparency in highlighting mobility opportunities is likely to reinforce barriers to the inclusion of underrepresented talent groups, including women.”

The results of the survey show:

  • More than half (52%) of women working in finance do not feel there are enough role models of successful international assignees in their organisation, compared to 32% of men
  • Men in financial services (FS) are more likely to prefer to undertake an international assignment before starting a family, with 77% of men surveyed claiming this is the case compared to 73% of women
  • Only 17% of women cited the wellbeing and education of their children as a concern that would make them think twice about embarking on an international assignment, compared to 22% for men

In the report, PwC highlights four key priorities for ensuring that diversity and mobility are mutually supporting and realising their potential:

  • Promote mobility as part of the firm’s talent brand
  • Challenge biases and stereotypes
  • Break down siloes from senior management with sponsorship from the CEO
  • Broaden options to increase take-up

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VERCIDA works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with VERCIDA to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please call 02037405973 or email info@vercida.com for more information.

We are also officially recommended by Disability Confident as a step on achieving Employer status, please click here for more information.

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VERCIDA works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with VERCIDA to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please email info@vercida.com for more information.

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