The Rise of Women Entrepreneurs in India in the Manufacturing Industry
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The status of women in the Indian society has undergone a drastic transformation as the nation races to become an epoch of change. From being shackled in roles of domesticity to working as a dynamic multitasking individual, women in India have been able walk a long way in successfully carving out a niche for themselves. Certainly, the fairer sex has left behind a liberating mark in various spheres of vocation, including in professions that were intrinsically male-dominated.
Women are currently playing a central role in the escalation of the economy, having made a substantial impact across all sectors. However, there exists a dire need of an upsurge in participation amongst female minds of the nation. While the wage war is a bone still worth contention, work force sensitization is the biggest thing that is taking place in order to make the market a dynamic place for women to prove their worth. Inspite of these promising facts, female talent still remains one of the most underutilized resources in the country. India ranks 87 out of 144 countries on the Global Gender Index Gap, as per the report which compares the data across four parameters: Health, education, political empowerment, and economic participation and parity.
A study conducted by McKinsey stated that India could increase its GDP by 16% to 60% just by enabling women to participate in the economy on the same footing as men. Manufacturing is a space that is said to need a reprieve as one can no longer have men-only factories while an ambitious 'Make In India' programme gets going. It is important to remember that women have always been known for their industrious and nurturing aura and this can be utilized well to mobilize the force.
Indian Women in Manufacturing
The sad truth is that in India, the manufacturing sector employs only 20% of the total workforce, glaringly much lesser than a number of Asian countries. Nations like China and Japan, although having a more traditional bent in framing a unilateral mindset, have heralded the importance of women workforce. Naturally, these regions have recorded a higher graph of female presence in manufacturing and India is soon following their trail. A range of companies, both new and old, have re-defined the rules of the industry, while setting an example for others to follow. It is a rule extolled as old as time- for more women to be a part of the workforce, it is essential to promote skill development. This in turn enhances productivity and efficiency, increasing employment opportunities and resulting in increased income- something that the nation can very well benefit from.
JCB India, a strong name in manufacturing construction and agriculture equipment, has witnessed a significant rise in the employment of women owing to the gender-inclusive policies that it has established. Today, JCB employs over 110 women in India, who are trained at frequent intervals on the latest technologies. On a similar vein, Maruti Suzuki has increased women workforce in their manufacturing team from 274 employees in 2012 to 366 employees in 2014. The other companies that are increasingly hiring more women are Kinetic Communications and United Technologies, ushering in a new wave in female-centric operations. The latter has started an all-women assembly line at its air-conditioner manufacturing facility in Gurgaon.
Here Skill India plays an important role in arming women with the apt training to take over the manufacturing storm. To imbibe the same school of thought Samsung has opened 18 technical schools in India. The branch at Patna is India's first female-only technical training centre and imparts skills to over 5,000 women each year.
For every dusk, there is a dawn and the rise of women in the manufacturing sector only proves the same.