Workplace gender equality is achieved when people are able to access and enjoy the same rewards, resources and opportunities regardless of gender.
Australia, along with many countries worldwide, has made significant progress towards gender equality in recent decades, particularly in education, health and female workforce participation.
However, the gender gap in theAustralian workforce is still prevalent; women continue to earn less than men, are less likely to advance their careers as far as men, and accumulate less retirement or superannuation savings. At the same time, men have less access to family-friendly policies such as parental leave or flexible working arrangements than women.
The aim of gender equality in the workplace is to achieve broadly equal outcomes for women and men, not necessarily outcomes that are exactly the same for all. To achieve this requires:
- Workplaces to provide equal pay for work of equal or comparable value
- Removal of barriers to the full and equal participation of women in the workforce
- Access to all occupations and industries, including leadership roles, regardless of gender; and
- Elimination of discrimination on the basis of gender, particularly in relation to family and caring responsibilities.
Achieving gender equality is important for workplaces not only because it is ‘fair’ and ‘the right thing to do,’ but because it is also linked to a country’s overall economic performance. Workplace gender equality is associated with:
- Improved national productivity and economic growth
- Increased organisational performance
- Enhanced ability of companies to attract talent and retain employees
- Enhanced organisational reputation.
For more information, download the business case for gender equality.