MCG Group has launched a subsidiary recruitment consultancy, Hopscotch, to bring together professional women who prefer flexible working options and companies looking for quality, shorter term hires. The brainchild of Helen McGuire and CEO of MCG Group of Companies, Justin McGuire, the company will work with professional women and the communications and administration/finance sectors to marry currently lost skills with flexibility and new ways of working.
The launch comes at a relevant time not just for the MENA region, but also the global marketplace, which is seeing an increasing focus on women in the workplace. One of the key concerns for women is a lack of flexible work options. In fact, 98 percent of non-working professional women have said that they would return to the workplace if more flexible options were available. Moreover, over half of the women surveyed held director level or higher positions before they left work.
With limited channels to find flexible or part-time work, women’s skills and knowledge are being lost from the workplace. In a recent survey of professional women in the GCC by MCG Group, 76 percent cited a lack of flexible options as their reason for not returning to work, with more than a third stating they would start the very next day if the right opportunities were available. In fact, The World Bank recently estimated that if women in this region participated as much as men, another 5 percent would be added to GDP.
Flexible working is a growing sector in the GCC region, popular amongst SMEs and larger organizations for its ability to provide niche skills and short term, easy hire solutions in a dynamic global economy. In a recent survey of its key clients, MCG Group research shows that 92 percent of companies require employees who work non-traditional hours as part of their workforce and 80 percent encourage flexible approaches to time and location management by their employees.
And with one in ten women feeling that they lack the confidence to return to work after a stint away from the office, Hopscotch aims to also support women at all stages of the process, offering exclusive workshops and specific skills coaching to those who register online at www.hopscotch.ae
Helen McGuire, former head of digital content at Impact BBDO / Proximity in Dubai, and herself a mother of one with her second child expected in the summer, says: “After a stint of maternity leave last summer, I had the chance to mix with so many super smart women who felt frustrated that they no longer had opportunities in the workplace. They were more than willing to be a dedicated resource and put their knowledge and skills to much-needed use, but because of family commitments, an ongoing full-time office role was not an option. Through Hopscotch, my mission is to spearhead that change.“
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