Vietnamese women's presence in senior management ranks second in Asia

By Dat Nguyen   March 7, 2019 | 11:03 pm PT
Vietnamese women's presence in senior management ranks second in Asia
Vietnam ranks second in Asia in the proportion of women in senior management. Photo by Shutterstock/Pormezz
With 36 percent of senior management teams in Vietnam including women, the country ranks second in Asia in female representation.

In Asia, Vietnam’s proportion of women in senior management positions is only below Philippines at 37.46 percent. It is higher than countries like Singapore at 33.04 percent, Indonesia 31.85 percent and South Korea 29.89 percent, according to a report released Thursday by Grant Thornton International.

Vietnam’s ration in this regard is also higher than the global average of 28 percent.

The top four roles of Vietnamese women in business are Chief Finance Officer (36 percent), Chief Executive Officer or Managing Director (30 percent), Human Resources Director and Chief Marketing Officer (25 percent).

"In Vietnam, women in business always play significant parts," said Nguyen Thi Vinh Ha, national head of Advisory Services and deputy general director, Grant Thornton Vietnam.

"We are proud of having many influential and inspirational female in general and look forward to a generation of successors."

However, Vietnamese women in senior positions still face many challenges, the report said.

It said 40 percent of Vietnamese women lack access to "developmental" work opportunities, higher than the global proportion at 27 percent.

Thirty-five percent lack access to networking opportunities, while the global rate is 26 percent.

They also have caring responsibilities outside of work, at 39 percent in Vietnam versus 25 percent in the world.

"If we want to continue seeing female representation trend upwards in senior positions, more deliberate action needs to be taken and leaders will play a critical role," said Kenneth Atkinson, executive chairman of Grant Thornton Vietnam.

"Policies that address equal opportunity in career development, bias in recruitment and flexible working can’t just be a nice to have. To achieve meaningful progress, they must be adhered to, enforced and regularly revisited to assess their effectiveness."

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