By Ammar Zaidi
Saraswati Anand was a management consultant, who quit her job to raise her children. Later, instead of picking up from where she had left off, she ventured into new avenues while keeping her family commitments. On Saturday, Saraswati and over 3,000 other women took part in a career fair called “Restart Her”, where women, who had taken breaks from fulfilling careers, came to explore new jobs opportunities and entrepreneurship avenues for a second innings.
At the Worli venue of the career fair, the women attended workshops, panel discussions, mentoring sessions and browsed through booths — put up by various multinationals and corporates willing to give women tailor-made jobs, to meet them half-way.
The companies, who came to offer employment, said the presence of so many over qualified aspirants at the fair reflected the quality of women workforce of the country. Organised by Bangalore-based job portal jobsforher, some working women at the fair said they came to explore more. Suu Chandra, who is currently employed with a multinational and is happy with her current job, came to look for better opportunities.
Devilina, who earlier used to work in California and is currently freelancing as an HR consultant, said she came to check out job options that were flexible. “I want to balance my time between my home and work.” Before organising the career fair for women looking to restart their career, Neha Bagaria, founder and CEO of jobsforher.com, conducted an online survey. On the question of what women in India were looking for while restarting their careers, 34 per cent of the women said they wanted to retain their financial independence.
Twenty-nine per cent said they wanted to come back into a professional mode for better “self-worth” when asked about the primary motive for restarting their careers. Fifty-one per cent of Mumbai women harped on flexibility when asked about what companies could do to enable their restart.