Career support, flexible work help firms climb Forbes’ top 200 employers for women

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Dive Brief:

  • A high percentage of women in leadership positions, combined with flexible work offerings and funding for education and career development, helped 8,000-employee Tampa General Hospital leap to the No. 1 spot on Forbes’ 2022 list of the best employers for women.
  • Forbes published the list, for which it surveyed 50,000 Americans in partnership with market research organization Statista, last month. Many honorees increased benefits offerings such as paid parental leave and adoption assistance, Forbes said in an article accompanying the rankings. Others have upped recruiting efforts for women; fifth-ranked Carvana worked with the nonprofit Women in Trucking to recruit drivers, per Forbes.
  • Abortion access is an emerging issue, Forbes noted, with some employers adjusting their benefits policies to ensure worker access to reproductive care. The publication highlighted firms including Microsoft, Starbucks and Salesforce, each of which have announced some form of travel or relocation benefit to employees who seek to obtain abortion services.

Dive Insight:

The combined effects of a pandemic, a turbulent economy and a crackdown on reproductive health access have created a cascade of anxieties for working women. The former was enough to cause women to rethink the role of work in their lives, according to a 2021 Gartner survey, especially for those supporting children. Nearly 70% of women with children in the survey said they agreed that the pandemic “changed how they value certain aspects of their life outside of work.”

Employers have enacted a variety of policies and programs in response. Last year, an executive of London-based financial technology firm Finastra told HR Dive about the influence that women and caregivers had on the company’s decision to move to a hybrid work model. Other firms turned to programs that allowed women who were sidelined by the pandemic to return to the workforce, such as returnships.

Representation can help, too. Forbes’ list highlighted several employers with a large percentage of women in leadership, including second-ranked REI and third-ranked Crocs, at which women filled more than half of leadership roles.

Employers will have a variety of legal hurdles to navigate if they choose to address hot-button issues such as reproductive care access, sources previously told HR Dive. And even for less controversial topics, such as paid parental leave, employers may need to ensure they have a robust communication strategy to ensure a smooth roll out of more generous policies.


The original article can be found at: HR Dive