Malaysia leads gender diversity in APAC

Malaysia has emerged as the standout performer in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region in supporting gender diversity at senior levels in the workplace, according to a regional report Making the business case for gender equity by Kelly Services.

The report indicates that Malaysia is leading the APAC region by having 28% of female senior managers in the workforce. This compares favourably to Hong Kong at 23%, Singapore at 21.5%, China at 21%, and Japan at eight per cent.

“The findings are highly significant as there is clear evidence that gender diversity delivers measurable, positive performance outcomes for businesses,” said Kelly Services’ senior vice-president and general manager for EMEA and APAC regions Natalia Shuman.

She added that hiring managers should zero in on these issues, especially for those in strong growth markets that are facing a limited talent pool.

The report also noted a finding by global management consulting firm McKinsey Global Institute that companies with gender diversity in leadership experienced higher returns on equity, operating profits and stock price. The finding also highlighted that increasing the participation of women in the workforce could potentially increase Malaysia’s GDP between RM6bil to RM9bil.

Kelly Services Malaysia managing director Melissa Norman said: “The report’s data delivers a compelling message for Malaysia’s hiring managers: gender diversity has direct consequences on a company’s bottom-line. With gender equity, workforce, productivity and innovation thrives.”