Why the Present – and Future – Workforce will be Female-Fuelled

As the world prepares to celebrate International Women's Day on the 8th of March, ManpowerGroup South Africa recognises and celebrates the pivotal role of women in shaping the present and future of the workforce.

During the pandemic, many women were forced to leave their jobs, which raised concerns about a prolonged economic recovery. However, within just three years, employment levels for women have returned to the same levels as before the pandemic. Women are playing a leading role in the post-pandemic recovery, showing resilience, adaptability, and a solid commitment to driving positive change.

Currently, women make up slightly over 50% of the workforce globally. Women between the ages of 25 and 54 have achieved record highs in their participation in the labour force. This demographic has not only re-entered the job market but has also paved the way for new careers, advocated for fair pay and benefits, and taken advantage of remote work opportunities.

Despite women comprising over 50% of the working population globally, they hold less than one-third of managerial and leadership positions. Notwithstanding their significant contributions, women continue to face barriers to advancing their careers.

Despite a growing talent shortage, less than a third of the technology workforce comprises women. This underrepresentation limits opportunities for women and hinders innovation and growth in key industries.



"As we celebrate International Women's Day, it is vital to acknowledge the significant contribution of women to the workforce," says Lyndy van den Barselaar, Managing Director of ManpowerGroup South Africa. "Women are leading the way in driving change, embracing new opportunities, and reshaping industries. It is imperative to remove barriers and ensure equal representation and opportunities for everyone."


Based on research conducted by ManpowerGroup, it has been found that even though remote work has become increasingly popular, only 8% of women prefer to work entirely remotely. In comparison, 7% like to work entirely in the workplace. The majority, which is 85%, require the autonomy to choose what works best for them. This highlights the importance of making the workplace flexible and inclusive, allowing women to thrive and reach their full potential.


As we commemorate International Women's Day, let us celebrate the achievements of women around the world and commit to creating a more inclusive and equitable workforce for future generations.