Risk Management

A new study paints a relatively bleak portrait on gender equality

Only one in 10 women thinks her company is taking real steps on equality.
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· less than 3 min read

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Your organization may be doing its best—but your best sure isn’t great when it comes to women in the workplace, according to a new study from Deloitte, which polled 5,000 women from companies spanning 10 countries. And it could spell costly retention issues (and broader dissatisfaction) in the years to come.

Only one in 10 women thinks her “employer is taking concrete steps” toward gender equality commitments, and 17% of respondents believed “being a woman is a disadvantage in their organization,” and “about half of women don’t think their employer’s commitment to supporting women has increased over the past year.”

That’s bad bad—and that’s just the start of it.

On a more personal level, nearly a quarter of respondents reported feeling burned out, and half said their stress levels were “higher than a year ago.”

While a third of the women reported taking time off within the last year due to mental health concerns, two-thirds said they didn’t feel comfortable talking about mental health at work or revealing that mental health challenges were the “reason for taking time off.”

That ties into a larger trend the report identified, which has stark implications for CFOs managing labor costs: A lack of work-life balance and inadequate pay were some of the top motivators for women who changed employers last year.

Yet only one in 10 women felt they could speak candidly about work-life balance, and a whopping 95% of respondents felt that taking advantage of flexible working options would negatively impact their chances at a promotion.

Without improvements, you can expect more turnover. Most women surveyed only expected to remain with their current employers for about two and half years, citing career advancement and work-life balance as key to retention. Those who planned to stay at their current company for five years or more said chances for advancement and other learning and development opportunities were some of the key reasons they were staying put.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this one out.

News built for finance pros

CFO Brew helps finance pros navigate their roles with insights into risk management, compliance, and strategy through our newsletter, virtual events, and digital guides.