Nicole Neumarker, Chief Technology Officer at WorkForce Software, talks with Training Industry about what women can do to prepare for the future of work and how employers can support and attract more skilled women to their teams.
Neumarker points to research from McKinsey, which is predicting that, as automation replaces more front-line, manual jobs, as many as 160 million women may need to change careers. That equates to nearly one-quarter of all women employed today. Knowing that employers must act today to ensure women are skilled for the roles of tomorrow, she gives practical advice, including the need for on-the-job training and flexibility in scheduling.
She notes research that shows training challenges are a barrier to women accessing STEM upskilling opportunities. Women cite a lack of time and inflexible schedules as barriers to accessing training. Notably, women also report that they wanted L&D programs tied to day-to-day work. Over one-half of women prefer building skills on the job over other options.
“Organizations need STEM skills to remain competitive, but beyond that, they also need diverse workforces,” Neumarker says. “By addressing the needs of women to develop crucial STEM skills, organizations can reap the well-known benefits of a diverse and inclusive workforce that is equipped for a digital future.”