Flexible work hours boost efficiency: Research

81 percent of employees would be ‘just as efficient’ if they could choose their own hours.

Dubai, UAE: Allowing flexible hours enables efficiency for both sexes, according to a new survey carried out by global PR and Communications body, Global Women in PR (GWPR). And while flexibility is attractive to the 83% of parent respondents who found balancing childcare and work a challenge, women are still at a huge disadvantage in the working world; one in three cite a lack of confidence as the one factor that held them back in the workplace, particularly where asking for a pay-rise is concerned.

With the UAE’s female populations considered one of the most well educated in the world and Government led initiatives specifically set up to tackle the issues of increasing the female workforce, there is still a long way to go until women and men are on an equal footing in all regions. Globally, the gender pay gap in the PR industry alone stands at $6,072.

Hopscotch.ae Co-Founder, Helen McGuire

Hopscotch.ae Co-Founder, Helen McGuire had this to say about the recent revelations; “On launching Hopscotch.ae 18months ago, we quickly realised that sourcing flexible work for women was only half the battle. Ensuring women follow a path to senior management and building confidence is key to reducing the gap, but we need those women in the workforce in the first place and in the UAE, the employment rate of women is less than half the global average.”

GWPR Co-founder Angela Oakes said “With 24-7 communications and the ability to stay connected anywhere in the world, why do we need to keep to the traditional 9-5 office working day? This in turn will help women better manage the demands of work and family commitments so they are given the chance to reach the top of the career ladder.”

It seems there is much to tackle both globally and across the UAE, and Hopscotch is one of the organisations committed to improving the situation. McGuire reveals; “We are fortunate in this region to be part of a network of notable organisations driving for change and support the UN Women’s Empowerment Principles here in the UAE. Hopscotch has continuously pioneered solutions to help close the gender gap and enable flexible work, including our next event, Talent Round Tables supported by Jumeirah Group. Attended by Talent Teams from four of the most progressive firms in the region – Mastercard, Nestle, Growth Partners and Zurich – women will have a direct opportunity to introduce themselves and learn more about the opportunities at these organisations, all of which have impressive internal women’s networks and flexible working policies.”

Holly Graham, HR Business Partner at Zurich had this to add; “At Zurich, we want to influence positive change within the workplace for every employee and advocate a ‘level playing field’ to help all of our employees reach their full potential. We are delighted to partner with Hopscotch and meet women that aspire to work with us and share the same values as we do.”

In a further commitment to the cause, Hopscotch has also launched a monthly series of Career Clinics. Supported by forward thinking institutions like PRCA, LinkedIn and Good Magazine, the evening sessions are designed to increase skills and enable networking, held at relaxed locations in DIFC. The next will be on October 15th at Gaucho from 6.30pm.

For more information on Hopscotch, their events and initiatives, please visit www.hopscotch.ae/ and contact press@hopscotch.ae.

GWPR research carried out by Onepoll amongst 757 respondents working in the PR industry from 19 countries.

Key Survey Findings

  • The average salary for men in PR is US$61,284 (£46,156) compared to women US$55,212 (£41,584) – revealing a gender pay gap of $6,072 (£4,572)**
• There is a staggering gender pay gap at the top in the PR industry, amongst the highest earners. 28% of men earn over US$150,000 compared to 12% of women.
  • 17% of men are ‘very confident’ asking for a promotion/pay rise compared to 11% of women
• 26% of women are ‘not very confident’ asking for a promotion/pay rise – compared to 13% men
• 28% of men think they will ‘definitely’ reach the top of the career ladder – only 18% women believe this • 81% of respondents thought they would be just as efficient if they could choose the hours they work
• Over half (56%) said they didn’t need a fixed office workspace to be efficient

** Holmes Report Salary Figures 2017

What business leaders have to say:

Sonali Attri, Global Talent Acquisition, Mastercard ME: “Hopscotch’s Talent Round Tables event will be very useful to identify and pipeline talent for our organization. There are high caliber candidates with tremendous potential who are looking to come back to work and this event is an excellent opportunity for us to meet them face to face.”

Holly Graham, HR Business Partner, Zurich Insurance: “At Zurich, we want to influence positive change within the workplace for every employee and advocate a ‘level playing field’ to help all of our employees reach their full potential. We are delighted to partner with Hopscotch and meet women that aspire to work with us and share the same values as we do.”

Nisrine Bakhos, Talent Team, Nestle: “Nestlé continually aims to boost work opportunities to female talents in order to encourage the professional development of women in the marketplace. Nestlé also provides a flexible work environment for a better future.”

Dr Christiane Scholderer, CEO, Growth Partners (formerly Athena CFO): “We are excited to participate in Hopscotch’s roundtable to get in touch with the talent we need to grow our business and that love flexible work as much as we do.”

For more information, please contact:

Hopscotch Press Office – press@hopscotch.ae

ABOUT HOPSCOTCH: Hopscotch is the first support platform in the MENA region to launch an offering purely for female professionals looking for flexible working. Launched in 2016, the company is spearheaded by husband and wife team Helen and Justin McGuire. A division of the MCG Group, the company was launched in April 2016 sourcing flexible working options, catering to professional women and forward thinking business. It also supports and encourages women back into the workplace by offering exclusive skills training, events and initiatives to registered talent.

GWPR BACKGROUND: GWPR is a global membership organisation connecting senior PR women around the world. Our global community offers the opportunity for members to share ideas, experiences and resources. GWPR also provides insights on key issues, from flexible work practices and gender pay equality, to creating a more balanced boardroom and a better working environment. Founded in 2015, GWPR is a not-for-profit organisation and an important sector group of ICCO – the International Communications Consultancy Organisation -representing 2,500 PR firms worldwide and 48 national trade associations.


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