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BUSINESS NEWS - UK - Most Women Say They Have Encountered Or Witnessed Inappropriate’ Behaviour By Male Colleagues: RANDSTAD

Posted 7th September 2022 • Written by •

While approximately a quarter of female workers in the UK report never having experienced any form of gender discrimination in the workplace, 72% have either encountered inappropriate behaviour from male colleagues, or have witnessed comments or inappropriate behaviour, according to a report from Randstad UK.

When it comes to career advancement, 7% of women across all industries report having been passed over for promotion due to perceived gender discrimination, while just under one in ten say they have been offered a less important role because of their gender.

Some of the discrimination comments specifically cited by the women in Randstad’s survey include: men taking over tasks because they believed themselves to be more suitable, a male counterpart receiving a greater pay rise despite a worse performing quarter, inappropriate nicknames, being asked to meet potential male clients to increase the likelihood of winning business, and not being offered work due to pregnancy.

When questioned about the factors that stand to have the greatest impact upon their careers, 60% of the women we surveyed cited work-life balance as having a notable impact, compared to 48% of men. Not far behind work-life balance, a lack of mentorship was cited as a negative career impact by 55% of women, followed by the absence of female role models (41%), and the possibility of sexual harassment within the workplace (32%).

Meanwhile, approximately one in five female respondents stated that flexible working hours would encourage more women to join their industry while 15% said that the lack of flexible working was a cause of women leaving their industry.

The majority, or 96%, of men and women surveyed said that having a female manager would either improve their working day, or would maintain it at the same level (a 1% increase on the 2021 survey findings).

Randstad also found that 73% of the women surveyed stated that employers in their industry were not doing enough to support female employees during the menopause. The majority of women respondents did not believe that after having a baby, they could return to work in a senior role on a part-time basis.

“It’s time for employers to fully recognise that the UK workplace is out of step with the broad needs and expectations of half of its potential workforce, and existing female employees. Employers need to get on board if they hope to get the very best out of their teams,” Randstad stated.

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