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Women in Construction and Engineering & COVID-19

Steps to employing more women in construction and engineering.

We are all becoming increasingly aware of the benefits and competitive edge that having a broad-ranging and diverse workforce can give to our companies.

More diverse workplaces are shown to boost mental health, wellbeing and profits, so there is no better time to step up your company’s gender equality game. COVID-19 has shaped and changed the way that we all work, and construction and engineering are no different, making working from home and more flexitime not only a possibility but a reality.

Let’s take advantage of the times changing and the radical shift in our approach to work by ushering in more women in construction and engineering in Australia (which currently stands at only 12%).

Whilst we know that gender equality can’t be achieved through 3 steps alone, implementing these practices can help create fertile ground for change.

Here are our 3 Steps to Equality for Women in Construction and Engineering in Australia:

Job Advertisements

At Virtue Talent, we’re committed to the highest moral standards of recruitment, and gender equality is certainly a large part of that. We seek to address any underlying biases and unconscious language that could potentially deter a female candidate.

We endeavour not to use any language that can be perceived as male-centric or male-biased. On the contrary, we always want to ensure that the highest quality candidate applies, as a recent study has shown that male candidates tend to apply when they meet on average 60% of the job requirements. Female candidates, on the other hand, apply when they meet 100% of the job requirements.

It’s therefore likely that high-quality female candidates will self-filter if a job ad has been worded in a male-centric way, which is something that we’re consciously committed to working against.

The Interview

We make a further recommendation, and what we always implement ourselves is having a structured interview to help promote gender equality.

A great way to interview any potential candidate is by first starting with an ice-breaker to ensure that the candidate is calm and able to perform at their best, as a staggering 93% of interviewees report job interview anxiety.

It’s important to have a setlist of questions that, once again, are not open to gender biases. Have a general idea of what you want of your candidate, but also keep an open mind.

The Panel

The election of a diverse interview panel is a key element to promoting diversity and more inclusion of women in construction and engineering in Australia.

We recommend a culturally diverse, age-diverse and gender diverse panel where possible to help reduce unconscious biases from the interview panel and the interviewees themselves being able to feel as comfortable and included as possible.

The Takeaway

Whilst there is no magic switch for improved gender equality for women in construction and engineering, taking small steps to help create change will help your business see the benefits of a more diverse, thriving and successful team.


Virtue talent partners with engineering and construction organisations to recruit skill shortage and underrepresented groups in the workplace; contact us to find out how we can assist in achieving your employment objectives.


903/50 Clarence Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000.

02 8880 0242


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