India has the highest youth population, with availability of right skill set and technical expertise at right price, and government programmes that make it easy for emerging organisations to adapt to technical evolutions. With a millennial-heavy and techno-friendly demographic, India could potentially become a strong influencer in fintech revolution.
An inflection point in focus on gender economic parity
Despite attention given to the issue of gender parity in recent years, according to the World Economic Forum’s annual 2017 Global Gender Gap Report there has been deterioration in women’s economic standing relative to men. In its report, the Forum calculated at the current rate of change, it will take 217 years to close the economic gap between the sexes — 47 years longer than projected in 2016 and 99 years longer than predicted in 2015. Women aren’t expected to reach economic parity with men until 2234, even before the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is fully realised. Not only will the revolution transform labour markets and displace jobs, but it will have a disproportionate impact on women.
“We find ourselves at a rare inflection point, navigating broad and potentially game-changing conversations about how women are faring in the workplace and beyond,” said Pat Milligan, Global Leader of Mercer’s When Women Thrive platform. “Everyone — from investors, shareholders, board members and leaders to employees and customers — is aligning on this issue and paying attention like never before.”
Mercer’s latest When Women Thrive research, Accelerating for Impact: 2018 Gender Inflection Point, sets out to understand the drivers of female advancement, what actionable steps organisations can take to act on this movement, and what type of model for change is necessary. Overall, organisations must take a holistic look at the future of women in the workforce, from the barriers determined to set them back to the urgent need for system accelerators to change the trajectory. “Helping women thrive means changing the behaviour of all the individuals who make up the organisation — in other words, changing the organisational culture. It is likely that automation of jobs will impact roles that women are deployed in, as severely if not more than the roles in which men are deployed. This will further worsen the gender equity agenda. Organisations need to actively add reskilling and redeployment of women to their gender initiatives,” said Shanthi Naresh, India Business Leader, Career, and Regional Practice Leader, Workforce Rewards, AMEA.
Mercer’s report examines how data and analytics can and must be used to accelerate women’s careers, even in the face of headwinds, such as job disruptions brought about by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, besides offering new data and insights around managing the health and wealth of employees in the context of gender differences, and how organisations can lead courageously to tackle the very challenging problem of driving deep cultural change to support progress on a topic that can challenge individuals’ core beliefs.