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Women outsmart men in job interviews

Posted on Feb 04, 02:30PM | IBNS

New Delhi, Feb 4 : Women candidates increasingly are outsmarting men when it comes to short listing by HR managers for sending calls for interviews or written tests for jobs and more and more Muslim women are making it to India Inc in areas like advertising, journalism, public relations, travel and tourism and private sector banking, an ASSOCHAM study has pointed out.

Based on the feedback received from 110 Human Resource heads of leading companies from all over India the study found that the ratio for receiving interview or test calls is 1 to 1.20 in favour of women.

This is fast resulting into girls from business schools, journalism institutions, travel and tourism courses filling more vacancies than their male colleagues at least in select but key sectors of the service sector, the study found.

Releasing the study here on Monday, chamber president Rajkumar Dhoot said: "As a pleasant surprise and signifying progressive trend, the number of women from the Muslim faith is increasing fast, especially in the white collar jobs."

"While we do not see our candidate as Hindu, Muslim or Christian in India Inc, we are noticing a trend where more and more girls from Muslim faith are taking to professional courses and are competing very well in the job market," head-hunter of a well-known Gurgaon firm said.

The good thing is that these Muslim women joining the corporate sector , not only at the lower rung of hierarchy but also as executives and managers are coming from universities from all over the country- be it Bombay University, Bangalore University, Jamia in New Delhi, Osmania University in Hyderabad or Aligarh Muslim University.

Several of these universities are also offering specialised professional courses like mass communication .

The study also found that however much the HR managers in some of the companies may try to balance the number of female candidates with male candidates; they end up finding more women on the final roll-call for the job aspirants.

"The main reason for these trends is that women are finding themselves to be more focused and navigating their career paths rather more professionally than was the case some years back. Besides, they are found more suitable than boys when it comes to soft skills like spoken English," it said.

The study found that in certain areas like television news anchoring, including the business channels, the males are finding themselves in minority.

"Besides being photogenic, the women reporters and anchors are asking quizzing questions be it relating to stock markets, car launches, golf shows etc," an HR manager, based in Pune said.

In any case in fields such as corporate communication, advertising, human resource management, personnel management, women are increasingly being preferred.

The ASSOCHAM study found that even in the business chambers - mainly at the apex level - ASSOCHAM included, the number of women employees is increasing fast.

"The point to be noted is that the female candidates are not only competing well with their male counterparts for the lower hierarchy jobs like those of receptionists, house-keepers, but also for management trainees and senior positions. The trend line is quite visible in banks like ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Yes Bank, Axis Bank and other private sector banks," it said.

However, the issue of security to the women employees is being taken seriously and the top level corporate managements are asking their HR and logistics divisions to see how less number or unavoidable number of them are put on late evening duty or night duty.

The ASSOCHAM study, after feedbacks from the HR personnel, said this issue in the long run may even adversely impact the job prospects as the corporates may employ women staff for night duty only as a last choice. However, industries like media, particularly television are coping with the situation rather well.

"It does speak volume of our courageous women work force that despite all the security related odds , they are not letting down their job commitments," said Dhoot.