Breaking the First of Many Glass Ceilings

At the first national conference on rural BPOs, as mentioned previously by Santhosh, the real spotlight was on women. Business processing organizations all over the country are discovering that women are just as capable, if not more, than men in completing the tasks related to these jobs.

“We give the same entrance test for both boys and girls and have no gender discrimination in our intake policy. But somehow girls seem to be more successful in our test and 75 of our 125 people are girls,” said C S Gopinath, senior vice-president of HDFC Bank, who set up the bank’s first BPO at Nellore in Andhra Pradesh through its subsidiary Atlas Development Facilitators Company.

In a society where social stigma and family responsibilities are also interrelated factors, all-women BPOs offer an attractive solution.

“Many fathers do not like the idea of sending their daughters to work alongwith boys. And if perchance, any girl goes out with a boy for a movie, the social stigma is so high that the whole village will boycott us. So, it made sense to have a women-only BPO,” said Madhukar Rajagopal, CEO of JSoft.

Gaining a foothold to respectable and skilled jobs within BPOs is a major step forward for women and their employment outlook. As one door opens, many more are sure to follow…

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