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Fewer women in key positions in India: Study

Wednesday September 29, 2021, By Diversity Digest

India is lagging behind many in the world, when it comes to women in key positions across companies, according to a new report. As per the report released by  Swiss brokerage Credit Suisse recently, at 17.3 percent, India Inc has very few women on company boards.

The report covered  33,000 executives from over 3,000 companies in 46 countries— these included 1,440 firms across 12 Asia-Pacific markets.

However, the good news is that there has been a six percent jump in the representation, from 11. 4 percent in 2015. India still has a long way to go since the global average is 24 percent.

Third lowest in APAC region

India is the third lowest in the region with fewer women in key positions, ahead of South Korea and Japan at 8 percent and 7 percent respectively. India’s numbers are still lower for women CEOs (5 percent ) and CFOs (4 percent).

There has been a 2 percent improvement in management diversity for India, moving from 8 percent to 10 percent in the last two years, observed the same report.

As per the report, the SEBI mandate of having an independent woman board member will provide a fillip to their representation.

Europe and North America lead the global average with 34.4 percent and 28.6 percent, followed by the Asia Pacific at 17.3 percent. Latin America is the lowest among all at 12.7 percent.

Career progression, a focus area

Avtar, which has been seeking better representation of women in key positions across sectors in India Inc, has turned the spotlight on the opportunities women get in companies for career progression.

The Best Companies for Women in India (BCWI),  a gender analytics exercise by Avtar in association with Working Mother, comprises companies that have woven diversity policies have a combination of professional and personal incentives for women employers. There are programs to enable career progression like career sponsorship, mentoring, leadership training alongside those that help them traverse the path of marriage and aid in the maternity continuum.


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