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How interim specialists help attract and retain female talent

by Fabian Hoshino

The job market in Japan remains active, and the fight for talent is getting more intense. With the power balance shifting in favor of candidates, companies have to offer better packages and additional benefits to secure and retain the best talent in the market.

In addition to salary, other aspects, such as work-life balance, are becoming more important, too. One factor that younger female professionals are taking into account, though, is what will happen if they have to go on extended leave for child care or to take care of other family members. A lot of them are afraid that once they go on an extended leave, they will be replaced with a new permanent employee, or that, once they return, they will be pushed into a completely unrelated position that won’t allow them to continue their careers.

For junior positions, that might not be a challenge for the female professional or the company, but with more and more women climbing the corporate ladder, it is certainly a new challenge companies face. One way of tackling this issue is by utilizing high-level interim specialists on a temporary basis. They can work with the incumbent to receive the handover, cover during the extended leave, and then hand the job back to the incumbent on her return. The benefits are clear:

  • The position is covered, and business continues without any (or at least minimal) disruption
  • The incumbent can step out of the job and still continue her career
  • Companies are able to attract and retain strong female talent

For bigger organizations, the rest of the team or other colleagues might be able to cover the position, but for smaller organizations that lack enough personnel to do so, this can be a very attractive solution. You can avoid a bidding war by offering more than just financial rewards to retain talent and reduce overall turnover. It helps to attract strong talent at the hiring stage, and it can make a big difference in a market where highly sought-after candidates receive multiple offers.