While challenges still exist for women in the workplace, recent trends demonstrate progress in closing the gender gap and dismantling the fabled glass ceiling. Female executives and public officials are on the rise, both statistically and individually.
In January of 2020, women held over half of the payroll jobs in the United States, a milestone that has only been reached once before. A vast majority (95%) of U.S. jobs added in December of 2019 were filled by qualified female candidates.1 With more women being hired than men, analysts project that women will continue to hold 48-50% of paid positions all across the wage spectrum as we move forward.1,2
The Shifting Economy Favors the Service Sector
The economy as a whole is evolving from manufacturing to the service sector, where women have an edge in the numbers. Having put in the time and advanced their careers, sometimes from the ground level, women are being recognized as highly effective leaders and managers when they excel in these highly competitive markets.
Hospitality, dining, fitness, and other service industries continue to seek these talented and successful candidates, who are statistically more likely to be female. Women are also well represented in the healthcare industry, not only as doctors, nurses, technicians, and pharmacists but as hospital facility directors and managers. In fact, 77% of healthcare and education positions are held by women.1
Seizing Opportunities and Raising Awareness
Women have been seeking higher education at a greater rate than men,1 and this proactive step is giving them the advantage when moving into the job market. This trend reflects the growth rate of women in the labor force, which has been 2-3 times the growth rate for men since the 1960s.2
Credit for these changes should largely be given to these women themselves, who have worked their way up through education and determination, often in the face of known challenges, including lesser pay on average than their male counterparts. As women become more of a force in the government, their voices are heard more clearly by employers and their fellow policymakers.
In 2020, we can see documented evidence of our progress toward equality:
- A record number of female senators and representatives in Congress
- Possibly multiple female presidential candidates for upcoming presidential races
- Increasing numbers of female political leaders in other developed countries
- A growing track record for women in corporate leadership positions showing increased profitability3
- Recognition that gender diversity is an organizational asset that promotes innovative thinking and a more successful corporate culture
Industry Biases May Still Limit Opportunities for Women in 2020
While great strides have been made and the future looks brighter for all working women, there are still challenges to be overcome. Some regions of the country and certain industries continue to lag behind the trend in recruiting qualified female candidates for their top positions.
Overcoming these biases may take time in heavily male-dominated manufacturing and technology firms, but those who seek to recruit and retain the most qualified candidates will reap the benefits of a workforce rich in qualified candidates of either gender. One way to accomplish this is to work with executive recruiting companies that focus on providing a shortlist of exceptional people without regard to race, age, or gender.
Taking this step would bring a broader range of talent and valuable diversity of perspectives to corporations that struggle to expand their leadership team or respond to the rapidly changing social and economic landscape. Executive recruiting opens doors for forward-thinking and results-oriented businesses and candidates alike.
Recruiting the Top Candidates for Leadership in 2020
Corporate recruiting in 2020 and beyond should fully leverage this valuable pool of highly trained and effective leaders. At The ExeQfind Group, we gather insights about our clients’ business goals and objectives. Understanding that people drive every innovative industry, we bring together top candidates and high-level opportunities in a win-win scenario for companies and working women.
Leadership and management talent abounds in the diverse candidates we recruit. Building deep relationships across leading industries nationwide, our consultants are perfectly positioned to make these connections through experienced retained executive search and a deep knowledge of the businesses we serve.
For 2020 and beyond, we expect women to continue to rise in the workforce and stand ready to assist in connecting those bright and innovative leaders with the top executive positions across the country. If you are interested in advancing your career in leadership or would benefit from retained executive search services to land the most qualified candidates in your industry, contact us to lead the way into an inclusive and empowered future.