How to Keep Your Female Talent

Amid ongoing gender inequality, women employees expect more from their employers. Learn how to retain female talent.

The workplace remains unequal for women. Learn how progressive employers can support and keep their female talent.

Good employees are hard to find, and when you find them, you want to keep them. Yet many companies continue to fall short when it comes to retaining and promoting a large portion of their workforce. With women leaders switching jobs at unprecedented rates, and younger women prepared to follow suit, what are the ramifications and what can companies do to shift the tide?

The Fearless-Girl Decade

The last decade marked a progressive leap for women throughout the corporate world. In 2022, there were over 74 million working women in America,1 representing close to half (46.6%) of the total labor force.2 Empowered women everywhere were breaking glass ceilings. More than 50% of women in the labor force held college degrees3 and 9% of Fortune 500 CEOs were women.4 In addition, the 49th Vice President of the United States is not only a woman but a woman of color. Fearless women are continuing to smash outdated notions and blaze forward, or so we thought …

The “Great Breakup”

Despite years of effort to support gender equality, it seems many women continue to face bias due to their gender, race, sexual orientation, physical ability or other aspects of their identity.5 Today, only 26% of C-suite roles are held by women—and, of those, only 5% are held by women of color.6 This has spurred what McKinsey has dubbed the “Great Breakup”—an exodus of female talent that has seen an average of two women directors leaving their company for every one who gets promoted to the next level.7


The most common reasons why women are leaving their companies:8

As these women step away, it threatens to create holes in the corporate pipeline for generations to come.


How Companies Can Help

With workplace inequality still rife, many women have begun demanding more from their employers. Leading companies are heeding the call by taking steps to target benefits to women’s needs. For instance: 

Yet more work remains to be done. Companies focused on retaining female talent may want to consider additional initiatives, such as career development programs geared specifically to women, providing both on-site and remote employees with equal access to mentorship and sponsorship opportunities, and better training managers to promote inclusion. 

Targeted Benefit Solutions

Knowledge is power when it comes to building impactful benefits, yet only 31% of companies gather information on employees’ caregiving needs and only 9% track financial wellness by gender.12 The absence of this data could create holes in benefit packages, leaving some employees without the solutions they really need.


To address this situation, there are a few red flags to have on your radar, including job exits, 401(k) loans and pay advances. When assessing these areas, take note of any trends, such as more job exits by female workers than their male peers. Then conduct an anonymous survey to learn about your employees' emotional and financial health, and better understand what workplace benefits they would use to address their needs.


Use this knowledge to tailor wellness resources that support your workforce. Then apply this information to offer accessible financial education and wellness resources targeted toward your female employees, such as emergency savings, dependent care and retirement planning.

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