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Survey Reveals Flexibility as Top Priority for UAE Mothers Returning to Work

Survey Reveals Flexibility as Top Priority for UAE Mothers Returning to Work
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The survey also highlights that a positive work culture, competitive compensation, and career progression are crucial elements for mothers returning to work.

Flexibility remains the top priority for mothers returning to work in the UAE, with 76.8 percent ranking it 5 out of 5 on the matrix, according to recent survey results from UAE employment platform Beyond Careers. The survey, conducted on International Women’s Day 2024, included 115 responses, with 92 percent from mid-senior level female professionals aged 31 to 50 residing in the UAE.

Key Findings

Beyond flexibility, other highly sought-after benefits include a positive work culture, competitive compensation, and career progression. The survey revealed that 56.2 percent of respondents have felt pressured, harassed, or made to leave a job due to pregnancy or pre- and post-natal issues.

Flexible Work Opportunities

Rowen Nadia, Founder of Beyond Careers, emphasized the importance of addressing the challenges faced by mothers re-entering the workforce. She stated,

“Forward-thinking companies can strengthen their corporate reputation and access a pool of experienced, time-restricted senior talent by implementing people-centric systems and policies.”

Beyond Careers aims to support employers in creating fair and equitable workplaces while serving as a portal for candidates seeking flexible and purposeful opportunities.

Diversity and Health Awareness

The survey represented 29 nationalities, highlighting the diverse experiences and insights of women in the UAE. Issues ranged from pay gap perceptions to the need to raise awareness about women’s health in the workplace. Additionally, 64.7 percent of respondents reported delaying family planning due to a lack of support in their professional environment.

Support and Career Coaching

The Return-to-Work Survey was conducted in partnership with the British Chamber of Commerce Dubai, led by CEO Katy Holmes. She noted the dual scenarios of experienced women seeking to return to work and company founders needing senior counsel on a part-time basis. In line with the UAE’s progress in advancing women’s empowerment and gender balance, business leaders are encouraged to support national targets through top-down implementation of inclusive policies.

Enterprises like Marc Ellis offer tailored career coaching services to help women enhance their CVs and address employment gaps, advocating their skills to clients and providing upskilling opportunities. Aws Ismail of Marc Ellis highlighted the importance of easing the transition back into the workforce, ensuring positions that value experience while accommodating personal commitments.

The survey underscores the critical need for flexibility and supportive work environments for mothers returning to work, emphasizing the broader benefits of inclusive and people-centric workplace policies.

News Source: Khaleej Times

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