In recent years, more and more women in Pakistan have been able to take up paid employment from 19% to 20.53% or hold managerial positions. Here, the average growth in the five best companies is around 18 percent. This is shown by the ‘Women Empowerment Award Survey’, which ECOVIS FAMCO Associates has compiled together with the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce & Industry – Pakistan (OICCI, www.oicci.org). Ecovis, which specialises in working with government and non-profit organisations, has been conducting the study annually since 2018.
There have been huge calls for gender equality in recent decades, enhancing the need to close the gender employment gap in Pakistan. Immense strides have been made in this area and there is no doubt that women in Pakistan have started taking up leadership roles in many industries.
Women in employment
From the agricultural sector to the financial industry, from the public to the private sector, the statistics show that in urban areas, 61% of women are in employment and in rural Pakistan, 39% of women work (see figure 1).
We can support you in conducting industry research and surveys in Pakistan. Fatima Habib, Senior Consultant – Human Resource, ECOVIS FAMCO Associates, Karachi, Pakistan
Women in leadership roles
Ecovis and OICCI carried out this survey to recognise those companies who have empowered women throughout their employment journey, whether by providing a day-care facility or transport, or by offering leadership and management roles to women. The survey shows a massive increase in the numbers. Each company has shown the improvement in the proportion of Female Directors varying from 2.9% to 40%.
The survey was constructed in a way that evidence had to be provided for each question. This made for better findings. For example, on how the leadership team monitors the progress of women, participants were asked to submit their company policy on women mentoring and training.
Over the years, the evidence submission ratio has been increased as Ecovis has created healthy competition between the companies in Pakistan. Figure 2 below demonstrates the increase in company participation and the submission of evidence per year since the study began in 2018.
The study provides a shortlist of the top 5 companies in Pakistan who made very noticeable changes in 2021 compared to 2020 by taking women into their leadership team (see figure 3).
*Company names cannot be shared for reasons of confidentiality.
Ecovis initiated the “Women Empowerment Award” (WEA) in 2018. The goal of this study is to recognise the endeavours of OICCI member companies to empower women in the workforce and to create gender equality within their organisations.
It shows the world that Pakistan is progressing well in women empowerment and that the role of women in various industrial sectors is increasing on a YoY basis at all job levels.