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Life sciences industry lagging in women workforce

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Mercer India reports that with only 11 per cent women workforce in life sciences industry, it is still at the entry-level of building ecosystems for gender-inclusion and women leadership

According to a study from Mercer India, Life Sciences industry is way behind in terms of female workforce representation that stands at 11 per cent for women workforce on an overall basis. In life sciences industry, there is only 5 per cent of female representation in sales and marketing function. Diversity though looks somewhat better in other functions in life sciences companies with women representation being 12 per cent in manufacturing, 17 per cent in R&D and 21 per cent in corporate functions.

“One of the major reasons for pharma lagging behind is the significantly large sales force which is not perceived as a career of choice by women and hence the talent pool is very limited at the entry level,” said Kalpesh Vohra, Cluster Leader for Life Sciences and Healthcare at Mercer.

He adds, Pharma sector is still at the entry-level of building ecosystems for gender-inclusion and women leadership. However, there are some recent positive trends like some companies putting in mandated ratio of female candidates while sourcing, providing higher referral amount to employees referring female candidates as part of the overall employee referral schemes in the company and a few more.

Vohra Mercer India advocates that, in order to be future ready from diversity perspective, pharma companies need to look at designing a compelling employee value proposition for women, at the same time having alternate employment model for women like job sharing, part-time job and alternate work opportunities.

Mercer India, as a principle partner in association with The Organisation of Pharmaceutical Producers of India (OPPI) hosted the fifth annual HR summit recently. The participants were drawn together to discuss this year’s theme ‘3D – Future of Pharma’ in the context of the growing importance and impact of diversity, digitalisation and design thinking in brands.

The Summit included an interactive and engaging discussion on the role of digitalisation in the pharma world and the impact on patient care.

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