Utilising women's skills

Women's careers are often different to men's with significant differences in the kinds of work done by men and women in New Zealand.

Women make up the majority of those in caring and administrative roles, while men make up the majority of techical, manual and managerial roles. Occupational segregation is one of the major factors contributing to the pay gap between men and women.

Women as a workforce are currently under-employed, unemployed or under-utilised at a higher rate than men.  One in three employed women work part-time, and of those part-time working women, one in five is under-employed.  Barriers to fully utilising women’s skills include the need for flexible work, part-time work, and managing childcare demands.

Over 95 percent of businesses in New Zealand are small to medium enterprises (SMEs) with fewer than 50 employees.  Providing ‘family-friendly’ work opportunities can be a challenge.  However, for SMEs to be sustainable and grow they need to attract and retain talented staff, who often need family-friendly work environments.