Talent has become a decisive factor of production in the global business context. A business competes on innovative capabilities, no longer just on the accumulation of assets. In this context, businesses cannot treat gender parity as superfluous. Women are half of the potential talent available in any country. Gender parity and efficient use of women in all sectors will be a competitive advantage for countries and for any global firm.
The onus is on global firms to work with governments in creating gender equality benchmarks in order to measure gender gaps globally, regional and even down to sub-industry sectors level. Policy makers can use standard benchmarks that track gender gaps economically and socially to capture the magnitude of inequalities. This understanding is necessary for us to prescribe tools that close the gap in homes and in workplaces.
The lack of female representation in public offices is a barrier to gender equality. Women’s access to public office may in many cases be restricted by party bias for male politicians. We need women to be adequately represented in government and politics to ensure sound policies that close the gender gap. It is possible to install gender quotas for women. In Singapore, women Member of Parliament make for less than 30% of the parliament. We have racial quotas ensuring minimum representation for Malays and Indians.
Gender equality benchmarks and female representation in public offices are ingredients for gender equality. Equally important is the level of women education and women’s access to information and resources. Access to information and education is necessary to create equal opportunities for women to success in the future.