Type of Gap: ...in communities / countries of operation
Due to familial and cultural pressure, it is still rare in some Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC; includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE) countries for females to be allowed to work. And even where they can work, they can still face significant restrictions, e.g. being separated from males in the office.
The total number of female employees is therefore lower than preferred in some countries - as low as 15% in some locations.
Type of practice: Work environment, work-life balance
We made a significant effort to educate and influence at many levels - government entities, universities etc. - and pitched an employment proposition that highlighted our international standards, learning and career options and the long term nature of that proposition. We ensured that our proposition did meet female expectations, e.g. regarding maternity leave, flexible working hours, etc.
We are tracking the number of females we were able to attract and retain and the total number of females employed. Engagement survey results are sliced to look specifically at female responses to check and then respond to issues raised re that employment proposition.
Ongoing, no particular end date.
The number of female employees has risen.
- Senior Management Support
- Willingness to take a position based on our values even when culturally sensitive.
- Achieving the right balance in terms of progressing an initiative we strongly believe is appropriate and ensuring we did not upset long term relationships and cultural sensitivities