Five Ways retrain.ai Breaks Down Barriers for Women in the Workforce

Isabelle Bichler
Reading Time: 6 minutes

This International Women’s Day, retrain.ai is celebrating the achievements of so many women progressing towards a more equitable future. More women are serving in leadership positions worldwide, more girls are being educated than ever before, and more countries have passed legal and regulatory reforms in favor of gender equality.

While this is an opportunity to reflect on how far we have come, there is still more work to be done. The gender gap in the global labor force continues to persist: around 49% of women participate in the labor force, compared to 75% of men. Occupational segregation remains a concern, with women remaining over-represented in care work and traditionally “low-skilled” roles, with limited opportunity for career mobility.

The Rapidly Changing Occupational Landscape: How the Major Changes in Occupations and Skills Requirements Affect Women

The “future of work” is already here. The adoption of technologies has accelerated, and Automation, AI, and digitalization are already transforming jobs and skills, and will continue to do so at a rapid pace.

The World Economic Forum estimates that 85 million jobs will be displaced by 2025, requiring immediate workforce reskilling and upskilling.

According to The World Economic Forum, inequality is expected to increase for women, low-wage, and low-skilled workers –disproportionately affected by the automation of jobs.

COVID-19 has only worsened the situation in two ways: the pace of technology adoption has increased dramatically, widening the skills gap, and drove away almost two million women from the workforce due to caregiving burdens drastically impeding their professional development.

At retrain.ai we turn these challenges into opportunities:

Bringing the forefront of HRTech innovation, retrain.ai is built to address the unprecedented shifts in the global workforce and help workers and women amongst them, get better jobs and empower organizations to have a resilient, diverse and skilled workforce.

retrain.ai’s Talent Intelligence Platform enables both employers and workers to adapt to the constant changes and navigate and thrive through the shifts in the occupational landscape.

Using AI and NLP, we capture business growth drivers, analyze roles and skills, and predict the Jobs-of-the-Future, allowing employers to understand better which skills are emerging, evolving and expiring and to quantify current talent gaps, so they can retrain their workforce effectively, while planning outside recruiting rapidly, leveraging people as a competitive advantage in a changing world.

At retrain.ai, we believe that data is the key to revealing gaps and opportunities, and advances in AI and analytics will promote inclusive unbiased HR practices and actions to drive progress.

Here’s how retrain.ai breaks down barriers for women:

1. Closing the Skills Gap 

Help Reskilling and Upskilling Workers, to Be Future -Ready and Employed in High Growth Sectors

Strategic workforce planning is at the core of retrain.ai’s mission. We provide real-time human capital analytics, continuously map occupations and the skills required, against labor data. We project demand for emerging jobs and evolving skills—those in professions that have grown the most, globally, in the industry and at an organization level and forecast what skills and jobs the organization needs to invest in to get the teams future-ready.

Based on these insights, our platform generates plans for internal mobility, and talent learning and development, empowering organizations to stay ahead of the curve and have a skilled workforce, recommending multiple opportunity pathways for workers to grow professionally, and find their footing for years to come in high demand positions.

Through our personalized reskilling and upskilling recommendations, we empower workers and women amongst them, to grow and enhance the skills they need to stay relevant and up to date and shift from positions negatively impacted by automation into in–demand jobs and create more opportunities to drive their career.

2. Closing the Opportunity Gap

Unlocking Hidden Talent and Increase Access to Positions

Studies on gender differences in hiring show that women are more socialized to “follow the rules” compared to men, which in hiring, results in women applying for positions only if they meet 100% of the qualifications, compared to 60% for men. Gender bias is also apparent in job descriptions that use “masculine” coded language, which discourages many women from applying.

Our AI-powered unbiased matching job model puts at the center of its assessments: skills, capabilities, potential, and interests, reducing biases and identifying the most qualified, diverse, and relevant candidates, letting each individual’s talent shine.

By mapping the organization’s skills, we unlock employees’ hidden skills and match candidates to positions based on their capabilities and skills, improving access to positions for women and the ability to climb the career ladder and increasing hiring relevance and diversity while making sure gender diversity is an immediate asset to the organization, not a future goal.

3. Closing the Wage Gap 

Focus on Pay Equality 

Women continue to remain underpaid. On average, women are paid 16% less than men, a figure that has stagnated in recent years. The gender wage gap increases even more, depending on the industry and seniority level, rising as much as 45%. The top decision-making and leadership roles also fail to reflect gender diversity – only 25% of managers and senior executives are women, and women consist only 9.5% of top earners.

retrain.ai provides real-time data on job growth, skills in demand, and labor market trends and enables actionable insights about occupation wage and compensation benchmarking data, allows a complete look helpful for strategic workforce planning and talent hiring, and helps avoiding wage discrimination, and supporting decision making regarding fair pay for workers.

In addition, through its upskilling, talent internal mobility and talent acquisition solutions, retrain.ai puts more women in better positions. By using unbiased algorithms to match workers to positions, based on skills, capabilities and potential, we elevate traditionally marginalized groups, and help organizations use technology to increase hiring relevance and diversity.

4. Retaining Diverse Talent

Gain Visibility to Employees’ Skills, Capabilities and Interests

According to McKinsey’s “Women in the Workplace 2020” report, women are 1.3x more likely than men to consider leaving the workforce or putting a hold on their careers, due to disproportionate familial responsibilities. Estimates show that this could result in over 100,000 women leaving senior leadership roles, and 2 million women overall leaving the corporate world, more than the number of women who graduate from university each year in the US.

Data suggests that COVID–19 work norms put more pressure on women. While remote work has the potential to create gender inclusivity, recent studies show that working from home had a disproportionately negative effect on women, and according to one report, nearly twice as many men as women — 57% compared to 29% — say that working from home has positively affected their career.

With innovative talent mapping and predictive workforce insights, retrain.ai ensures that employees are supported in their career journey, and are provided with career pathing tools that put them at the helm, making sure that they are equipped with the resources to drive their own path, at their own pace.

By gaining visibility into employees’ performance, strengths and needs, retrain.ai allows organizations to stay agile, increase work flexibility and act quickly to adapt to changing needs.

In these times of change, women and men, either working remotely or on-site, can get better and faster support and guidance every step of the way to navigate the work–life balance, and increase their retention and engagement.

5. Putting Intersectionality at the Forefront

The barriers for women in the workforce continue to multiply when we factor in age, ethnicity, educational background, etc. Intersectionality is becoming more important as businesses understand how one’s overlapping identities lead them to experience more discrimination.

retrain.ai is revolutionizing the talent lifecycle from “hiring to retiring”, providing organizations with the unbiased tools necessary to widen their talent search. Through skills–centric assessments, equitable hiring, on-the-job learning, personalized training and career navigation tools, retrain.ai connects diverse talent to opportunities across the employee lifecycle.

Final Note:

Our company’s renowned advisor, Dr. Carl Frey (Director “The Institute of Future of Work” at Oxford University, who co-authored the looking forward study on the susceptibility of American jobs to automation ), said “Technology has in many ways, benefited women in employment over the past century. Machines have created jobs that require more cognitive skills such as memory and reading, proven to be beneficial for women, and have replaced physical tasks done mainly by men.”

Indeed, women have leveraged technology and have come a long way, but there is much more progress to achieve.

At retrain.ai we “walk the talk” and shape a better future every single day, equipped with groundbreaking Machine Learning models to highlight diversity and inclusion, identify areas of gaps and opportunities, and act on emerging jobs and skills, empowering people and organizations to stay resilient, skilled and future–proof.

Sources (1) “More women are serving in leadership positions around the world, more girls are being educated than ever before, and more countries have passed legal and regulatory reforms in favor of gender equality.” Source: UN SDGs – Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (2) “The gender gap in the global labor force continues to persist: around 49% of women participate in the labor force, compared to 75% of men.” Source: International Labour Organization – The gender gap in employment (3) “Occupational segregation remains a concern, with women remaining over-represented in care work and traditionally “low-skilled” roles, with limited opportunity for career mobility.” Source: International Labour Organization – The gender gap in employment (4) (WEF_GGGR_2018.pdf (weforum.org) We find that there is a significant gender gap among AI professionals.21 Only 22% of AI professionals globally are female, compared to 78% who are male. This accounts for a gender gap of 72% yet to close Global Gender Gap Report 2018 – Reports – World Economic Forum (weforum.org) (5) “On top of this, the COVID-19 pandemic has only worsened the situation for women, driving away almost 2 million women from the workforce due to caregiving burdens.” Source: McKinsey – The pandemic’s gender effect (5) “The World Economic Forum estimates that 85 million jobs will be displaced by 2025, requiring immediate workforce re-skilling and up-skilling.” Source: WEF – The Future of Jobs Report 2020 (6) “However, inequality will only increase for women, low-wage, and low-skilled workers who are facing disproportionate impacts of the pandemic, drastically impeding their professional development.” Source: McKinsey – The pandemic’s gender effect (7) “Studies on gender differences in hiring show that women are more socialized to “follow the rules” compared to men, which in hiring, results in women applying for positions only if they meet 100% of the qualifications, compared to 60% for men.” Source: Harvard Business Review – Why Women Don’t Apply for Jobs Unless They’re 100% Qualified (8) “Gender bias is also apparent in job descriptions that use ‘masculine’ coded language, which discourage many women from applying.”  Source: University of Waterloo/Duke Study on Gendered Wording in Job Advertisements Source: McKinsey – Women in the Workplace 2020 (9) “On average, women are paid 16% less than men, a figure that has stagnated in recent years.”  Source: UN SDGs – Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (10) “The gender wage gap increases even more depending on the industry and seniority level, rising as much as 45%.” Source: Business.org/US Bureau of Labor Statistics – The Gender Pay Gap Across the US in 2021 (11) “The top decision-making and leadership roles also fail to reflect gender diversity – only 25% of managers and senior executives are women, and women are only 9.5% of top earners. “ Source: Center for American Progress – The Women’s Leadership Gap (12) “The barriers for women in the workforce continue to multiply when we factor in age, ethnicity, educational background, etc.” Source: McKinsey – The pandemic’s gender effect (13) “According to McKinsey’s “Women in the Workplace 2020” report, women are 1.3x more likely than men to consider leaving the workforce or putting a hold on their careers, due to disproportionate familial responsibilities.”  Source: McKinsey – Women in the Workplace 2020 (14) “Estimates show that this could result in over 100,000 women leaving senior leadership roles, and 2 million women overall leaving the corporate world, more than the number of women who graduate from university each year in the US.” (15) Frey, Carl B., Michael A. Osborne. 2013. “The Future of Employment: How Susceptible are Jobs to Computerization?” Working Paper, Oxford University. https://www.fhi.ox.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/The-Future-of-Employment-How-Susceptible-Are-Jobs-to-Computerization.pdf  (16) nearly twice as many men as women — 57% compared to 29% — say that working from home has positively affected their career: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/work-from-home-men-more-productive-women/ (17)“Technology has in many ways, benefited women in employment over the past century. Machines have created jobs that require more cognitive skills such as memory and reading, proven to be beneficial for women, and have replaced physical tasks done mainly by men.” (BBC – 100 Women: who’s going to lose out from automation?

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