Health care, education offer best opportunities for female executives: Survey

Manufacturing, transportation, oil and gas least likely to provide advancement opportunities

Canadian industries with the best opportunities for female executives remain within the traditionally female dominated fields, according to a survey by Randstad.

The 500 female managers and executives polled believe that the health-care (58 per cent) and education (52 per cent) sectors provide the best opportunities for women to move into managerial/executive positions in the next three to five years.

Other fields that were mentioned as providing ample room for advancement were the not-for-profit sector (35 per cent), financial services (32 per cent), hospitality (29 per cent), professional services (23 per cent) and the public sector (22 per cent). Sectors with fewer opportunities included information technology (11 per cent), engineering and construction (six per cent), oil and gas (three per cent), and transportation and logistics (two per cent).

The industry least likely to provide advancement opportunities was the manufacturing sector (one per cent).

“Women have traditionally led in fields like education but their dominance in fields such as business, finance and professional services comes as no surprise. Even in fields they do not currently dominate, it is undeniable that women are making significant strides in what are typically considered male-driven job markets," said Molly Huber, vice-president, Western region, at Randstad Technologies.

Many organizations, from all industries, still need to work harder to improve gender diversity at the executive level, found the survey.

"Companies need to do more to advance female talent by providing leadership training, mentoring and coaching, and creating opportunities for women with leadership potential to progress from more junior roles," said Huber.

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