Women professionals face more absurd queries than men at job interviews and appraisals: TimesJobs survey

New Delhi, April 5, 2021: Women professionals still face absurd queries – about their marriage and family plans – at job interviews and appraisals, as compared to their male peers found a recent TimesJobs survey. While India Inc. celebrated International Women’s Day with much zest in March, the ground realities for most working women haven’t changed on many counts. TimesJobs surveyed 1,564 women professionals, aged 28-40, employed in different sectors to understand how their work life changed in the last decade. 

In the survey, most women professionals said that work-life imbalance was their biggest challenge (voted by 48% respondents), followed by gender pay gap. Most respondents also said that while hiring most firms held a bias against mothers, preventing women from resuming work post-maternity. These findings cement the age-old rue that working women face many conscious and unconscious bias at work. 

Most absurd queries for women professionals:
The TimesJobs survey asked if women professionals face unnecessary probing about family at job interviews and appraisal meetings, and the unanimous answer was a ‘yes’. About 66% respondents said that they faced absurd questions about marriage or plans on having children v/s their male counterparts. Only 34% respondents said that they hadn’t faced such queries. 
 
Lockdown fatigue for women professionals, more women lost jobs too:
The TimesJobs survey asked the respondents (all working women) if the COVID-19 induced lockdown was tougher for them v/s their male colleagues. Most (74%) respondents said yes, hinting at a latent exhaustion from managing work and home non-stop during the pandemic.The survey also probed if any women they knew lost jobs during the pandemic. The answer here too was a ‘yes’, voted by 70% respondents.

No transparency around salary promotes gender pay gap:
Many workplaces – in India and abroad – have been harping about their ‘same work, same pay’ policies for long but that hasn’t reduced the gender pay gap. The survey investigated the reasons for gender pay gap. Most respondents said that an unconscious bias among hiring mangers (executing diversity policies and programs) and no transparency around pay were the two big culprits (each voted by 34% respondents) for existing pay gap. Gender bias
was named as the third contributing factor, as voted by 32% respondents.