A report released today by global online professional network LinkedIn has some good news on India. According to the report, India has shown a slight increase in female participation in the workforce over the past few months. The report states that gender parity has improved across many industries while female representation grew by 8 percentage across Corporate Services, Education, Health Care and Media & Communications.
Although the nation-wide lockdown necessitated by the Coronavirus pandemic since March 2020 had a negative impact on the economy, it looks like more women have been hired since then. A press statement from LinkedIn claims that the hiring of women in many developed countries followed a U-shaped trajectory in 2020, dipping in April before recovering in June and July. It added, “However, India bucked the trend in maintaining and even increasing gender parity - the share of female hires increased from around 30% in April to reach 37% at the end of July.”
The report is the second edition of the Labour Market Update, a monthly update from LinkedIn on hiring trends and insights on hiring rate, female representation across the workforce and in key sectors, and the impact on hiring rates for talent with digital skills.
The study shows that hiring continues to recover, gender parity has improved, and disruptive digital skills can help to increase the resilience of professionals to challenges in the current job market. It suggests that support from live-in domestic help and grandparents, as well as more flexible working hours with remote working schemes, has allowed more women to enter the workforce despite schools and childcare facilities being closed during the lock-down.
“In India, work from home has certainly boosted gender parity and emerged as a great equalizer in terms of gender diversity with increase in female representation across key sectors. The lockdown, which promoted acceptance of the work from home concept supported by flexible work hours, has emerged as an opportunity for women to rebuild their careers and start afresh,” said Pei Ying Chua, APAC Lead Economist, Economic Graph team at LinkedIn, in the press release.
Additionally, talent with more advanced digital skills (defined as skills required for designing and developing new technologies, such as artificial intelligence and robotics) have weathered the COVID-19 storm better than those with basic digital skills (defined as digital literacy skills to access email and basic applications such as Microsoft Office) - the hiring dip for talent with advanced digital skills was 1.8x less than talent with basic digital skills.