5 Ways HR Can Better Support Women at Work


Despite much progress over the last few decades, women at work continue to express frustration about the status of their careers and salaries. They do not see themselves in leadership roles beyond middle management. They earn $.82 for every $1 men earn. They continue to feel more of the pressure at work and at home because they still tend to shoulder more of the burdens of household chores and care taking for family. As a result, they feel largely ignored and overburdened at home and work.

It doesn’t have to be this way. HR Exchange Network recently asked Human Resources and business leaders on Terkel.io to share their recommendations for providing women at work with better support. Find out what ideas they shared:

Be Inclusive

“One thing HR leaders can do to support women in gaining greater access to pay equity and career advancement is to create more senior leadership positions that are all-inclusive of women. 

For example, many organizations have a policy of having gender-neutral recruiting; however, having a promoted role with the title ‘Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer’ underscores the importance of fair workplace practices and also creates an authority figure specifically focused on ensuring diversity and equal opportunities for progression. 

This uncommon example allows female employees to find visibility within the organization hierarchy and establish their own platform from which to bridge communication with other executives organically.”-Tasia Duske, CEO, Museum Hack

WATCH: Be Unstoppable at Work Series: Empowering Women in HR and Beyond

Conduct Annual Pay Audits

“Every organization should conduct regular pay audits to identify and address any gender pay gaps. HR leaders can also implement policies and practices that promote diversity and inclusion, such as flexible work arrangements, mentorship programs, leadership development opportunities, and unconscious bias training. 

Another important action that HR leaders can take is to create a culture of transparency and open communication around pay and promotion decisions. Ensure employees understand the criteria for pay and promotion decisions and provide them with information about how your organization makes these decisions. 

Aside from salary transparency, you can post gender-neutral job descriptions and create employee resource groups specifically for women to provide support, networking opportunities, and mentorship. Some organizations have also established diversity and inclusion metrics to track progress toward gender parity in leadership and pay equity.”-Amy Spurling, CEO and Founder, Compt

Provide Access to Advancement

“One thing HR leaders can do to support women in gaining access to pay equity and more opportunities for advancement is to promote an open culture with wages and promotion criteria. 

This means addressing any existing disparities, as well as providing clear guidelines for career progression and compensation. Our organization is also taking steps to ensure that there are no gender biases in our recruitment and promotion processes. 

We are actively working to create an environment of gender equity, including offering mentorship and development opportunities specifically for women. Our leaders commit to providing equal opportunities for learning and growth, regardless of gender.”-Tawanda Johnson, HR and DEI Consultant, Sporting Smiles

Promote Accountability

“One thing that HR leaders can do to support women in gaining access to pay equity and more opportunities to rise in the ranks at work is to implement policies and practices that promote transparency and accountability around compensation and career advancement. 

This can include conducting regular pay equity audits to identify and address any gender pay gaps, providing training and resources to managers to ensure they are making unbiased decisions in hiring, promoting, and compensating employees, and establishing clear career progression paths with specific criteria for advancement. 

HR leaders can prioritize diversity and inclusion initiatives that focus on creating a more inclusive workplace culture where all employees, regardless of gender or other demographic factors, feel valued, supported, and empowered to reach their full potential.”-Isabella Meyer, Editor, Art In Context

Set Clear Expectations

“Create transparency with clear paths for every role and level. This way, you remove a lot of the wiggle room for role clarity, expectations, and how they’re met. There’s simply less room for interpretation—and more concrete steps and competencies that are the same for everyone.” -Veronika Schäfer, Head of Learning Science, Zavvy


Photo by Ketut Subiyanto for Pexels

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