This report discusses the theory and
practice of gender in organisations. It discusses the main approach to which
gender inequality is reproduced and implicated in the workplace, i.e. the
ideology of separate spaces and ideal workers. The ideal worker belief shows an
employee fully committed to the work and organisation with no demands.
organisation for this report is AstraZeneca, which includes its practices
regarding gender equity measuring its performance concerning gender equality,
including analysing the organisation’s policies. This report includes AstraZeneca’s aim to create an inclusive workforce and workplace
that reflects communities in which they help people by providing a diversity of
ideas, using cultural understanding and importantly, creating an environment
where people feel valued. AstraZeneca performs well in gender equality, as the
global senior leaders were women. The organisation remains dedicated to
demonstrating gender equality through equal pay across its workforce.
AstraZeneca also performs well in gender equality due to a higher promotion
rate for women.
Further, this report includes AstraZeneca acknowledges that gender is a fundamental social determinant of health. It focused on increasing the presence of women across their leadership teams and represented 50% of women and men in their workforce. Finally, the recommendations for gender policy and practice include male managers being involved in a workshop that aims to promote awareness for women’s wellbeing, incorporating social dialogue, giving women the opportunity to act as leaders, and creating a platform, “She Owns It,” to appreciate and acknowledge them and their contributions.
This report discusses the gender practice in
organisations. It defines how conditions that reproduce existing gender
arrangements may be developed in work organisations. It discusses how
persistent are gender
inequality and gender-based advantage in organisations. It
elucidates how cultural images of gender are widely disseminated through organisations
and discusses income and status inequity being partly created through
organisational processes. This report explains how
masculinity and occupational gender segregation are largely the product of
organisational processes. It explains the effectiveness of equal opportunity
and diversity management policies. The report highlights AstraZeneca’s practices
of gender equity measuring its performance concerning gender equality,
including analysing the organisation’s policies. Lastly, it includes
recommendations on how AstraZeneca can improve its gender practices for
creating a better and more inclusive workplace.
Organisations can be considered gendered (Acker 1990, 1992). Gender can be interpreted as embedded in organisational relations, forms, and relations (Halford et al., 1997). Therefore, the development of organisation and gender may be perceived as combined (Acker 1990, 1992).
According to gender scholars like Acker and Halford, gender is performed and created in a continuous process that depends on social control practices and socialisation that benefit men and a drawback for women. Many organisations are involved in this process. According to International Labour Organisation (2020), gender diversity is indicative of the ability to better gauge consumer interest and demand (37.9%), enhanced company reputation (57.8%), innovation and openness (59. %), an increase in retention and recruitment (59.7%), and higher productivity and profits (62.%). Furthermore, when workers feel valued equally, they are more likely to feel safe contributing and remaining with the organisation. For example, a condition that reproduces current gender practices include AstraZeneca promoting equal pay for both genders. The ILO (2020) mentions that equal pay benefits organisations attract talents and encounter an increased retention rate of female workers.
According to the
Office of National Statistics (ONS, 2021), the gender pay gap decreased to 7.4% amid full-time workers and 15.5% amid all workers in 2020 (see
Appendix 1). Surveys of the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and Annual Survey of
Hours and Earnings (ASHE) show that the COVID-19 pandemic factors did not affect
the gender pay gap in 2020 (ONS, 2021). Another example is Fujitsu, Ireland, and the UK branch has a holistic approach to
handling the gender pay gap and encouraging gender equality. This includes
gender pay gap reporting and analysis. Fujitsu supports the childcare needs of
its workforce and strives for a better work-family balance. The organisation
has increased the number of women in leadership roles
and reached a better gender balance in the talent pipeline (ILO, 2020). Another
condition that reproduces current gender practices includes supporting women in management and business. According to ILO (2020),
accomplishing women’s economic empowerment and gender equality in management
and business entails enhancing the gender balance at every level of
organisational leadership and raising the numbers of female entrepreneurs and
business owners. Italy, Germany, and France have the best women representing on
boards. In addition, several G7 countries have developed a quota system that
represents women on organisation boards (Appendix 2).
Empowering women in the workforce means
allowing them to thrive as entrepreneurs and investors (ILO, 2020). For example, Deutsche Post DHL Group leads a mind-set and culture of
gender equality and offers flexible working practices supporting women’s
careers. In addition, the organisation arranges high-profile events and
training courses to promote women’s leadership and diversity and
gender-sensitive talent management systems to provide women employees with
family duties without penalising them. Another example is Intesa Sanpaolo, which
developed a “Business Gemma programme” to offer tailored loans to self-employed
women and manage or own a business. In addition, the programme has an insurance
policy covering aspects like maternity and health and allows legal protection
in challenging times in the private life of businesswomen (ILO, 2020).
to Stamarski and Son Hing (2015), organisations have been inhospitable places for women because
of various types of gender inequalities. For example, the longer time
entailed for females than males to improve professionally, lack of female
leadership, and workplace discrimination negatively impact female opportunities
and earnings. Dahl and Krog (2018) add that workplace discrimination leads to women entering the lower socio-economic position.
Such discrimination can be attributed to human resources decision-making and
policies. Moreover, when female employees engage with organisational decision-makers,
they may encounter personal discrimination, i.e. sexist comments.
Culture’s role is
immense and is directly related to gender, according to the cultural theory of
gender named as Gender schema theory, which Sandra Bem introduced in 1981,
stated regarding the role of culture associated with gender (Starr and Zurbriggen,
2017). Therefore, individuals usually learn it related to the roles of males
and females in an organisation with the help of their culture. More precisely,
culture used to influence both men and women thinking and cognitive ability
(Wong et al., 2018).
For example, if a person
has grown in a dominant male Society, his behaviour and attitude can reflect
his culture and role in an organisation. Moreover, in the contemporary and
digitalised world, most organisations are still working on the
gender-segregated job. Therefore, due to cultural images of gender in
organisations, women lag behind men in different aspects. For example, Bagilhole
(2017) found that women is considered to have less pay and authority in an
organisation compared to men. However, five main processes can be widely
disseminated in organisations to reproduce gender. In contrast, it is
culturally considered taboo to encourage networking activities among women and
minorities men in organisational events. Therefore, ways for women must be
created to enhance their careers in different organisations as it plays a
significant role in success.
Eriksen et al. (2021)
states that inequity and an unfair environment has been partly created with the
help of organisational processes. Income inequity and unfairness have been mainly
related to women. However, income and status inequity has been prevailing in
companies for decades in both developed and developing countries. On the other
hand, from income inequity, it is considered an uneven distribution throughout
a population. Therefore, the top 10% of employees in the company earn 50% of the organisation’s
total income (Teng and Kassim, 2018).
employees have little to no status rights in organisations. Organisations treat
their employees differently depending upon their status. Differences can emerge
from class-based, race, ethnic background and gender (Silver, 2020). For
example, companies used to give facilities to white and the majority; on the
other hand, Asian, African, Black, and Hispanic employees usually faced status
inequity in organisations. It is a global phenomenon that can be mitigated with
the help of good organisational processes.
Gender identity, particularly masculinity,
is the product of organisational processes. For instance, individuals in
hostile sexism perceive women as a threat to a man’s position, so they act as
gatekeepers refusing women’s access to more masculine or prestigious roles. According
to Stamarski and Son Hing (2015), hostile sexism includes negative stereotypes and antipathy related to
women, like women are sexually manipulative, overly emotional, and incompetent.
Hostile sexism is related to beliefs that women must be less powerful than men
must, and women may try to take power from men.
other hand, benevolent sexism includes overall positive perceptions regarding
women, as long as they have traditionally feminine jobs. People with benevolently
sexist beliefs classify women as weak and needing adoration, support and
protection. Most significantly, benevolent and hostile sexism go hand-in-hand
due to ambivalent sexists. This means that individuals high in hostile and
benevolent sexism believe that women are weaker than men are and should work in
limited domestic jobs.
According to Acker
(1990), occupational gender segregation is partly created through organisational
practices. This relates to divisions of labour, power, locations in physical
space, and allowed behaviours, including the institutionalised means of
maintaining the segregation in the structures of the state, family, and labour
markets. Acker (1990) add that such segregation in organisations is well
reported and evident. Even though there are high differences in the trends and
degree of gender segregation, men are at the highest roles of organisational
power. Managers’ decisions usually start gender segregation, and organisational
practices preserve them.
In terms of equal
opportunity and diversity management policies, all
workers are responsible for directly handling, reporting or challenging discriminatory
behaviour, bullying, harassment, or unfair treatment in the workplace. All
organisations must comply with the Equality Act 2010, as appropriate and following
current good practice. These policies are effective because organisations must
perform an equality analysis to evaluate the impacts of all policies related to
employment. According to the Home Office (2017), all employees should be
accountable and engaged with diversity and inclusion agenda to create real
progress. Organisations are responsible for promoting an environment where all
employees, regardless of gender, are involved and comfortable.
Organisations must allow women to
communicate and thrive on parity with men for creating a more diverse and
stringer pipeline to represent gender equality. The Home Office (2017) also
suggests that organisations must engrave a work-life balance and flexibility
into their work culture for both women and men. The managers must understand
the barriers to female progression and establish events/programmes to identify
these. These policies are effective as the Insolvency Service delivered its
diversity and equality strategy, placing managers responsible for ensuring all
employees acquire formal equality and diversity training. The Service examines
all concerns regarding inappropriate behaviour, harassment, and discrimination
in organisations. The Service ensures that all organisations are consistently
and fairly implemented in all organisations’ appointment and selection
processes, disciplinary and grievance processes, staff development
opportunities, and performance management processes.
Our top dissertation writing experts are waiting 24/7 to assist you with your university project, from critical literature reviews to a complete masters dissertation.Find Out More
AstraZeneca was founded in 1999 and is
headquartered in the capital of the UK, London. AstraZeneca was developed
through the merger of two organisations, i.e. “Astra AB of Sweden” and “Zeneca
Group PLC of the UK”, with a common vision and similar science-based cultures
of the pharmaceutical industry (AstraZeneca 2021a).
AstraZeneca aims at providing its strategic
priorities sustainably, supporting long-term commercial success and scientific
innovation. AstraZeneca focuses on the commercialisation, development, exploration of
prescription medicines in Biopharmaceuticals and Oncology, including Immunology
and Respiratory, Metabolism and Renal, and Cardiovascular. AstraZeneca sells
products under Marcaine/Sensorcaine, Diprivan Citanest, Carbocaine,
Merrem/Meronem, Losec, Entocort, Nexium, Onglyza, Crestor, and Atacand. The values of AstraZeneca includes
how they work together and their integral behaviours to lead success (AstraZeneca
In terms of
gender equity, AstraZeneca has a culture of
diversity and inclusion, as innovation entails breakthrough concepts that arise
from a diverse workforce allowed to challenge modern thinking. All women and
men work in environments where they feel empowered and safe (AstraZeneca, 2021b).
AstraZeneca aims at creating an inclusive
workforce and workplace reflecting communities in which they help people by
providing a diversity of ideas, using cultural understanding and importantly,
creating an environment where people feel valued. AstraZeneca values the
differences as it identifies that a team becomes creative when it consists of
people who think differently, thus creating an environment to provide
opportunities to explore and create. This is how AstraZeneca fosters
innovation, constant growth and learning (AstraZeneca, 2021b).
Moreover, according to the gender pay
report, AstraZeneca acknowledges that gender is a fundamental social
determinant of health and has a Young Health Programme (YHP) that takes a
gendered approach. The YHP recognises that boys and girls have various levels
of vulnerability and exposure to non-communicable disease risk factors. As a
result, 57% of young people reached due to the YHP are girls.
Further, AstraZeneca is performing well in
terms of gender equality; for example, in 2020, 47% of the global senior
leaders were women. AstraZeneca aims at reaching 50% by 2025. In the UK, AstraZeneca
had 48% female and 52% male employees in 2020 (see Appendix 4) (AstraZeneca,
2020). AstraZeneca performs well concerning gender equality due to the improved
gender pay gap since 2020, as AstraZeneca saw a higher number of women in
senior roles. It progressed with closing the gender pay gap for new employees
and recruiting more women than men. AstraZeneca remained dedicated to
demonstrating gender equality through equal pay across its workforce. According
to the gender pay report, AstraZeneca also performs well in gender equality
because of the upper quartiles, consequently leading to a higher promotion rate
for women (AstraZeneca, 2020). Nonetheless, the gap is led by the higher part
of men than women in senior roles in MedImmune Cambridge that requires
restructuring of its research and development and an increased part of women
who work part-time (see Appendix 3).
According to the gender pay report, in
2020, AstraZeneca focused on increasing the presence of women across their
leadership teams. The progress was supported by several initiatives, like the “Women
as Leaders programme” for improving the next generation of female leaders, “Empowerment
programme” for introducing aspiring or new female leaders, and a “Network for
Women” group developed for female employees across our UK to nurture a pipeline
of potential female leaders, act as mentees and mentors, and create connections.
The “Women as Leaders programme” has been running for seven years.
Over three years on average, women who
participate in the programme are twice as likely to be promoted as those who do
not participate in the programme. In 2020, AstraZeneca represented 50% of women
and men in their workforce and aimed for the same at management levels
(AstraZeneca, 2021b). For example, AstraZeneca has policies to create and
sustain diverse leadership and talent development. AstraZeneca aims to create,
attract, and retain diverse talent reflecting and serving the patients and
communities. Its diverse workforce allows the organisation to understand
demographics, relate to them, and implement approaches. AstraZeneca encourages
decision-making at an adequate level. AstraZeneca maintains a safe environment
and inclusive leadership for everyone at every career level.
According to ILO
(2020), gender equality cuts across the Decent Work’s four elements, i.e.
promoting social dialogue, extending social protection, guaranteeing rights at
work, and promoting organisations and jobs. Gender equality identifies that
women and men should have equal opportunities, responsibilities, and work
rights that allow for creativity and fulfilment, respect human rights,
guarantee fundamental security in adversity, and ensure an appropriate living
standard for themselves and their families. According to the gender pay report,
AstraZeneca plays a significant part in promoting women to participate and
succeed in “science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM)”. AstraZeneca supports
initiatives to encourage women in STEM through involvement with the local
colleges and schools to ensure that they are inspiring and cultivating talent
for the future (AstraZeneca, 2020). This is an effective practice, as it would
eliminate gender discrimination and create equal opportunities for women to
come forward and take part in leading roles.
Our top dissertation writing experts are waiting 24/7 to assist you with your university project, from critical literature reviews to a complete masters dissertation.Find Out More
of gender diversity stresses women. However, according
to Madsen et al. (2020), men also have an important part as allies and
“co-drivers” for women. Thus, males must improve the gender policy and practice for women. For example, AstraZeneca’s
male managers can be involved in a workshop that aims to promote awareness of
the significance of women’s work-life balance, wellbeing, and self-care. In
addition, they can create an empathetic communication workshop focusing on decreasing
the natural unconscious bias restricting men from demonstrating adequate
support for their female employees. This is vital as the Centre for
Women, and Business (2017) mentions that women
cannot be fully engaged without men because most senior leaders today are still
men and are in the leading role to impact organisational and cultural change.
AstraZeneca must create a workplace attractive to
people with diverse social identities and women before developing certain
recruitment actions, outreach programmes, or other actions to attract talent. For
this purpose, social dialogue is vital. According to ILO (2020), social
dialogue can involve collective bargaining agreements leading to a culture of
equality, diversity, and respect in an organisation. Therefore, AstraZeneca
must dialogue and consult their employees to recognise their needs and respond
to them. Furthermore, AstraZeneca should account for employees’ needs and
managers’ duties according to the standards set by the ILO, the Equality Act
2010, and Human Rights Act 1998. This can help ensure that both managers and
employees encourage accountability and transparency in their existing and
future activities on gender equality at AstraZeneca. Social dialogue can also allow AstraZeneca to
recognise inequalities related to gender and develop a truly gender-equal
environment that positively affects society.
Further, AstraZeneca must create specific
leadership roles for women only. This will allow women to perform well and come
forward with their ideas and plans to implement in the organisation, be it for
the business or gender practices. AstraZeneca’s managers should allow women to
act as a leader for one week to expose them to organisational practices
relating to management, diversity and inclusion, and sustainability. This approach
will gain confidence and self-esteem in women promoting diversity and creating
a safer workplace. In addition, managers can evaluate their performance and
provide constructive feedback so that they can improve and prepare themselves for
future leadership roles. Most importantly, AstraZeneca should honour their
female employees by developing a “She Owns It” platform to appreciate and
acknowledge them and their contributions. AstraZeneca must take care of men and
women, have appropriate flexibility policies, safety, health, freedom from
violence policies, and career development and work-life balance policies to
promote an encouraging and better working environment.
This report aims to discuss the practice of
gender in organisations. Gender is performed and created in a continuous
process that depends on social control practices and socialisation that benefit
men and a drawback for women. The two conditions that reproduce current gender practices include
promoting equal pay for both genders and supporting women in management and business. This report concludes
that many organisations have been
inhospitable places for women because of gender inequalities. Workplace
discrimination leads to women
entering the lower socio-economic position. The
role of culture is immense and is directly related to gender. Culture used to
influence both men and women thinking and cognitive ability.
digitalised world, most organisations are still working on gender-segregated
jobs. It is
culturally considered taboo to encourage networking activities in
organisational events among women and minorities men. The
report concludes that individuals in hostile sexism perceive women as a threat
to a man’s position. Hence, they act as gatekeepers refusing women’s access to
more masculine or prestigious roles. AstraZeneca has a culture of diversity and
inclusion, as innovation entails breakthrough concepts that arise from a
diverse workforce that challenge modern thinking. AstraZeneca acknowledges that
gender is a fundamental social determinant of health. Therefore, it focused on
increasing the presence of women across their leadership teams and represented
50% of women and men in their workforce. This report includes recommendations
for gender policy and practice. For example, male managers can be involved in a workshop that aims
to promote awareness for women’s wellbeing, social dialogue, give women the
opportunity to act as leaders, and create a platform, “She Owns It,” to
appreciate and acknowledge them and their contributions.
Acker, J., 1990. Hierarchies, jobs, bodies:
A theory of gendered organisations. Gender & Society, 4(2),
Acker, J., 1992. Gendering Organizational
Theory. I Mills, Albert & Tancred, Peta (eds) Gendering Organizational
AstraZeneca 2021a. Our company. Available at:
AstraZeneca, 2020. AstraZeneca Gender Pay Report. Available at: Astrazeneca.com.
Available at: https://www.astrazeneca.com/content/dam/az-uk/AstraZeneca_2020_GPGR_2020-12-21.pdf
AstraZeneca, 2021b. Inclusion and diversity. Available at:
Bagilhole, B., 2017. Being different is a very difficult row to hoe:
Survival strategies of women academics. In Changing the Subject (pp. 15-28).
Taylor & Francis.
Centre for Women and Business, 2017.
Men as Allies: Engaging Men to Advance Women in the Workplace. Available at:
Dahl, M. and Krog, N., 2018. Experimental
evidence of discrimination in the labour market: Intersections between
ethnicity, gender, and socio-economic status. European Sociological
Review, 34(4), pp.402-417.
Eriksen, S., Schipper, E.L.F., Scoville-Simonds, M., Vincent, K.,
Adam, H.N., Brooks, N., Harding, B., Lenaerts, L., Liverman, D., Mills-Novoa,
M. and Mosberg, M., 2021. Adaptation interventions and their effect on
vulnerability in developing countries: Help, hindrance or irrelevance?. World
Development, 141, p.105383.
Halford, S.J., 1997. Gender, careers
and organisations: current developments in banking, nursing and local
government. Macmillan International Higher Education.
Home Office, 2017. Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2018 - 2025
Inclusive by Instinct. Available at:
Madsen, S.R., Townsend, A. and Scribner,
R.T., 2020. Strategies that male allies use to advance women in the
workplace. The Journal of Men’s Studies, 28(3),
Office of National Statistics, 2021. Gender pay gap in the UK: 2020. Available at: https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/earningsandworkinghours/bulletins/genderpaygapintheuk/2020
Silver, B.R., 2020, December. Inequality in the Extracurriculum: How
Class, Race, and Gender Shape College Involvement 1. In Sociological Forum
(Vol. 35, No. 4, pp. 1290-1314).
Stamarski, C.S. and Son Hing, L.S., 2015.
Gender inequalities in the workplace: the effects of organisational structures,
processes, practices, and decision makers’ sexism. Frontiers in
psychology, 6, p.1400.
Starr, C.R. and Zurbriggen, E.L., 2017. Sandra Bem’s gender schema
theory after 34 years: A review of its reach and impact. Sex Roles, 76(9),
Teng, P.K. and Kassim, U.K., 2018. Corporate Social Responsibility
and Business Performance of Manufacturing Industry. International Journal of
Accounting, 3(8), pp.69-77.
Wong, E.C., Collins, R.L., Cerully, J.L., Jennifer, W.Y. and Seelam,
R., 2018. Effects of contact-based mental illness stigma reduction programs:
age, gender, and Asian, Latino, and White American differences. Social
psychiatry and psychiatric epidemiology, 53(3), pp.299-308.
Why pay more for the same quality? Choose our cheap assignment writing services today and witness the difference yourself. Click now to get started!