To mark International Women’s Day (IWD) on Sunday 8th March 2015, PwC surveyed 8,756 female millennials (women born between 1980-1995) from 75 countries including 117 from the Middle East to find out how they feel about the world of work and their career.
The report – The female millennial: A new era of talent – reveals that the female millennial is much more likely to believe she can reach the very top levels with her current employer, particularly those starting their careers (49%).
The female millennial ranks opportunities for career progression as the most attractive employer trait (53%); making her more career confident and ambitious than previous generations.
Female millennials in Brazil (76%), India (76%) and Portugal (68%) are the most confident, while their peers in Japan (11%), Kazakhstan (18%) and Germany (19%) are the least confident.
Of the female millennials who are in a relationship, 86% are part of a dual career couple, with 42% earning equal salaries to their partner or spouse. And almost a quarter (24%) are the primary earner in their relationship.
When it comes to diversity, 86% of female millennials seek out employers with a strong record on diversity, equality and inclusion – and while they say employers talk about diversity, 71% do not feel opportunities are really equal for all.
What’s more, 43% of female millennials believe employers are too male biased when it comes to promoting employees from within – up 14% since 2011.
Millennial women in Spain (60%), France (58%) and Ireland (56%) view employers in their country as the most male biased, versus Malaysia (16%) and the Philippines (11%) where female millennials are more optimistic.
For a Middle East perspective Hani Ashkar, Middle East Senior Partner, PwC, says: “The results demonstrate that women entering the workforce today view opportunities for climbing the career ladder as vitally important – even more so than receiving financial incentives.”
Adding “Our global research shows that when it comes to the female millennial, we really are talking about a new era of female talent. Female millennials are more highly educated and are entering the workforce in larger numbers than any of their previous generations. For example of PwC’s 476 UAE-based female staff, 20% are partners, directors and senior managers – and we are looking forward to swelling these numbers even further in the UAE and the region.”
As the experience of a 34-year-old millennial woman with 12 years’ work experience will be very different to that of a 22-year-old millennial woman just starting out in her career, the report looks at the insights and desires of the female millennial by career stage: career starters (female millennials with 0–3 years’ work experience), career developers (4–8 years’ work experience) and career establishers (9 or more years’ work experience).
PwC Global Diversity Leader, says: “When it comes to earning power and patterns, female millennials really are trail blazers, with 66% of female millennials in a dual career couple earning as much as or more than their partner or spouse. The more experienced the female millennial, the more likely she is to be the primary earner in her relationship. Our study found that 31% of female millennials with 9 or more years’ experience are the primary earner in their relationship, compared to 18% of millennial career starters and 24% of career developers.”
“Our research also dispels some significant myths, for example that women leave work to have families,” she adds. “The female millennial was least likely to have left a former employer because she was starting a family, and most likely due to a lack of career opportunities. Employers must commit to inclusive cultures and talent strategies that lean in to the confidence and ambition of the female millennial from day one of their career.”
More highlights of the PwC report include:
1. To find out more about PwC’s IWD activities and to download The female millennial: A new era of talent, visit pwc.com/iwd. The report is based on a survey of over 10,000 millennials from 75 countries, 8,756 of whom are female. More thoughts on diversity can also be found on PwC’s Gender Agenda blog.
2. PwC is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion and has a range of programmes in place to make progress on the issue. These include Aspire to Lead: The Women’s Leadership Series, a global forum on women and leadership for students around the world. PwC has also partnered with the UN Women’s HeForShe campaign, which aims to mobilise one billion men and boys as advocates and agents of change in ending the persisting inequalities faced by women and girls globally.
3. To read more PwC research on the Millennials, take a look at Next Generation Diversity: Developing tomorrow’s female leaders; Millennials at work; and PwC’s NextGen: A global generational study.
4. We just published the latest results for the PwC Women in Work Index, which show that the Nordic countries lead the Index, with Norway maintaining pole position, followed by Denmark and Sweden. The Women in Work Index (WWI) is a weighted average of five key measures that reflect female economic empowerment using data from the OECD and national statistical offices:
To access a full report that provides further detail of the methodology and results, including trends in individual indicators visit: http://www.pwc.co.uk/the-economy/publications/women-in-work-index.jhtml
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Established in the Middle East for 40 years, PwC has firms in Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Oman, the Palestinian territories, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, with around 3000 people (www.pwc.com/me).
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