Global initiatives: Malaysia – Leading the way in gender diversity
PwC Malaysia has made great progress in increasing the number of women in serious ranks of the organisation. With dedicated policies in place since 2001, the firm is among the PwC global network’s most successful in terms of gender diversity.
Thirty five per cent of its partners are women, 48% of its directors are women and 80% of its Tax Leadership Team is female (numbers as at October 2009). In addition, a survey of its people in 2008 found that across the board, both men and women agree that women are given equal opportunity for career progression (81%) and are valued and respected as much as men (90%)
PwC Malaysia female partner Chin Suit Fang explains: “This inclusive atmosphere is the result of our emphasis on our Code of Conduct and a strong tone from the top. Our leaders have made it a personal mission to lead the way in promoting equality and to mentor promising women. Over the years, this brought about a shift in attitudes.”
Chin Suit Fang is a testament of this. A member of PwC’s Global Gender Advisory Council since 2008, she was appointed to PwC Malaysia’s Country Management Team in December 2009 – a further sign that things are moving in the right direction.
Giving people the opportunity to balance their work and personal lives
The WorkLife Plus Programme (WLPP) is one example of a number of initiatives that have been put in place to make progress on the issue. Aimed at addressing people's concerns about maintaining a healthy balance between work and personal life, WLPP offers three options:
- Flexible Work Arrangements
- Time-Out – allowing people to plan in advance for additional time off beyond the annual leave entitlement
- Career Break – giving people the flexibility to apply for one to three months off for personal/professional development
Assurance Financial Services Senior Manager Mah Ai Chia says: "Working three days a week allows me to have time to bond with my two daughters, something very important to me as a young mother. Being on the programme has definitely taught me to do more planning and to be even more results-oriented. I determine up-front what I will achieve each week, leading to me having a higher level of productivity. "