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Retail concept 'poor' among Saudi women

Riyadh, August 6, 2012

Forty-two per cent of Saudi Arabian women who responded to a survey highlighted lack of awareness of what retail work pertains.

Respondents mentioned there aren’t any success stories in the region let alone the country to understand the sort of career path they would be undertaking and the perception of the retail industry must change, according to the survey conducted by Alwane, a recently established regional coalition of experienced and emerging leaders from 17 countries across Mena.

Twenty-five  per cent said family pressure and acceptance is what holds them back from working in the retail industry and only a mere 5 per cent mentioned that transportation was an issue in accepting a retail job.

When participants were asked what would be the best option in encouraging women to work in the retail sector, 35 per cent of participants recommended an awareness campaign to portray success stories as well as benefits of working in the retail sector.

A further 33 per cent recommended that laws and legislations are clear to the public and employers regarding work in the retail sector. Nineteen per cent responded that the choice of working hours (one shift) or part time roles should be adapted.

The survey also highlighted an interesting statistic on what type of stores do women prefer to work in.

Thirty-seven per cent responded they would work in cosmetic stores, 33 per cent prefer working in clothes stores, followed by 14 per cent in lingerie shops. A total of 16 per cent highlighted that they would be interested in working in either optical stores or furniture departments.

The survey which interviews numerous HR managers concludes that an awareness campaign should be launched to thank those who chose the path into the retail sector and also highlight the success stories that have happened during the past year.

The study was done in partnership with women empowerment hub Glowork, Harvey Nichols Riyadh and KPMG.

Khalid Alkhudair, Alwane country officer and Glowork Founder said: “There are a lot of good stories on the ground, L’Oreal for instance sends all their new joiners to Italy for two weeks intensive training, and their salaries start at SR5,000 ($1,333) which offers females a challenging ground to work on.” – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Saudi Arabia | KPMG | retail | Survey | Women |

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