​International Women's Day (IWD) 2024 under the empowering theme of "Inspire Inclusion" shines a light on the remarkable achievements of women in the workplace and beyond. This theme underscores the critical importance of creating inclusive environments that not only celebrate women's contributions but also actively dismantle the barriers that hinder their progress and that of other minorities in professional settings.

The "What Women Want" survey provides valuable insights into the priorities and needs of female employees. With 769 respondents sharing their views, the survey highlights the growing emphasis on flexibility, mental health support, and inclusive workplace cultures.

This article explores the celebration of women's achievements, the cultivation of inclusive workplace cultures, and the enhanced support for female employees in Singapore, emphasizing the importance of recognizing contributions and fostering equity in professional environments.

Celebrating Women's Achievements

Women have consistently been trailblazers in innovation, leadership, and transformative change, shattering long-standing barriers and establishing new paradigms of excellence.

The recognition of women's achievements across different sectors serves not only to celebrate their individual triumphs but also to underscore their profound collective influence on various industries and communities.

Here are 4 ways to recognise women’s achievement:

  • Pioneering Leadership: Showcases women as key drivers of innovation, leadership, and transformative change in various sectors.

  • Breaking Barriers: Demonstrates how women have shattered traditional barriers to set new benchmarks of excellence.

  • Role Modeling: Highlights the importance of visible success stories in inspiring more women to enter and advance in their careers.

  • Cycle of Empowerment: Encourages a continuous flow of women pursuing diverse fields and leadership roles, fostering progress and inclusivity.

Nuances of Mental Health Issues Affecting Women

As organisations grow increasingly aware of the significance of mental health and wellness in the workplace, it's imperative to recognise that certain aspects of women's mental health and wellness might still be overlooked.

The findings from the Cigna Healthcare Vitality Study 2023 bring a pressing concern to light.

91% of female employees in the Asia Pacific with children under 18 experience significant stress, with an overwhelming workload cited as a primary stressor.

Here are 5 key issues that organisations should be aware of:

  • Reproductive Health Awareness: Address reproductive health challenges like postpartum depression and pregnancy loss, which significantly impact women's mental health and professional life.

  • Understanding Physiological Influences: Acknowledge how menopause and hormonal changes can exacerbate mental health issues, necessitating a deeper comprehension and support within the workplace.

  • Inclusive Policy Implementation: Develop and enforce policies that cater to the broad spectrum of employee needs, ensuring a supportive workplace for all.

  • Equal Parental Leave: Offer equal parental leave opportunities, acknowledging and supporting the shared responsibility of child-rearing in modern family dynamics.

  • Flexible Work Arrangements: Provide flexible working conditions to accommodate the diverse needs and responsibilities of employees, promoting work-life balance.

Creating Inclusive Societies Within Workplaces

Inclusion in the workplace transcends the mere presence of diversity; it involves creating an environment where all employees feel valued, heard, and empowered to contribute to their fullest potential.

  • Foster Open Dialogue: Cultivate an environment where both male and female employees feel safe and encouraged to share their experiences and perspectives, enhancing mutual understanding and respect.

  • Diversity Training: Implement regular diversity and inclusion training sessions to educate employees on the importance of inclusivity and the value of diverse backgrounds and viewpoints.

  • Inclusive Policies: Develop and enforce workplace policies that promote inclusivity, such as anti-discrimination policies, flexible working hours, and equitable parental leave.

  • Representation Matters: Ensure diversity in leadership and decision-making roles to reflect a commitment to inclusivity and to provide role models for female workers.

  • Celebrate Diversity: Acknowledge and celebrate various cultural, religious, and personal milestones and observances of all employees to foster a sense of belonging and community. This includes implementing policies that address the unique challenges faced by women and minorities, such as flexible working hours, parental leave, and measures to prevent discrimination and harassment. By fostering an inclusive culture, organizations can unlock the vast potential of their diverse workforce, driving innovation and growth.

Support for Female Employees in Singapore

In addition to combating gender discrimination in the workplace, new laws will also provide increased chances for women to re-enter the job market.

The support includes:

  • Enhanced Household Services Scheme: Singapore is broadening the Household Services Scheme to include essential child and elder care services, providing families with more support to meet their domestic needs.

  • Childcare Support Initiatives: To encourage more women to return to work, childcare costs will be reduced, and non-working, lower-income mothers will receive greater subsidies for their children's preschool education.

  • SkillsFuture Credit Enhancement: An additional SGD$4,000 (USD$2,977) in SkillsFuture Credit is aimed at encouraging women to develop new skills and retrain for new careers, supporting their re-entry into the workforce.

  • High Employment Rates and Pay Equity: Singapore boasts one of the world's highest employment rates for women aged 25 to 64 at 77%, with ongoing efforts to narrow the gender pay gap further.

Moving Forward: The Path to Inclusion

As we honour International Women's Day 2024, we acknowledge the continuous journey toward a truly inclusive workplace. Despite considerable advancements, there remains a persistent need to cultivate environments where all individuals, especially women, can access equal opportunities for success. It's imperative for organizations, leaders, and communities to champion this mission of equality and inclusion.

In this era of change, Charterhouse Singapore stands as a steadfast ally for those seeking to enhance their career trajectories or re-enter the workforce. We are committed to connecting talented individuals with ideal organisations that not only recognize but celebrate the diverse contributions of women.

With a keen focus on workplaces that offer multifaceted benefits catering specifically to women's needs, Charterhouse Singapore is dedicated to facilitating career paths that are not only rewarding but also aligned with the principles of diversity and inclusivity.

Connect with our team here.