Flexibility continues to be the primary concern for mothers reentering the workforce in the UAE, with 76.8% rating it 5 out of 5 on the matrix, as per the recent survey released by UAE employment platform Beyond Careers.

Aside from flexibility, the survey revealed that the most sought-after benefits include positive work culture, compensation, and career progression. The study, launched on International Women’s Day 2024, was based on 115 responses, with around 92% of respondents being mid-senior level female professionals residing in the UAE aged between 31 and 50 years.

Furthermore, the survey indicated that 56.2% of the respondents have experienced pressure, harassment, forced resignation, or lack of job offers due to pregnancy or pre- and post-natal issues.

Rowen Nadia, Founder of Beyond Careers, expressed the intention to shed light on the challenges faced by mothers returning to work and drive discussions on inclusion and addressing the broken rung. She emphasized the potential for forward-thinking companies to enhance their corporate reputation and access experienced senior talent by implementing people-centric systems and policies.

The survey also demonstrated the diversity of the UAE, with 29 nationalities represented, sharing insights on various topical issues such as pay-gap perceptions and women's health awareness in the workplace.

Given that caregiving responsibilities largely fall to women, 64.7% of respondents acknowledged being affected by or delaying family planning due to inadequate support in their professional environment.

The Return-to-Work Survey, conducted in partnership with the British Chamber of Commerce Dubai under the leadership of CEO Katy Holmes, sought to address the rising scenarios of highly experienced women seeking to return to work and company founders in need of senior counsel on a part-time basis.

The UAE continues to make strides in advancing women’s empowerment and gender balance, urging business leaders to support national targets through people-centric systems and policies.

Enterprises like Marc Ellis in the UAE provide tailored career coaching services to enhance the CVs of women reentering the workforce, advocating their skills and availability to clients, as well as offering upskilling and reskilling through their training academy to facilitate a smooth transition back into the workforce, as stated by Aws Ismail in an earlier interview.