Studies by PwC on women in business

In connection with International Women’s Day, in the last few days PwC has published three studies on the theme of women in business.


Modern mobility: moving women with purpose
More women than ever are internationally mobile. But there’s still a major gap between the aims and aspirations of these women and what their employers are offering. The report brings together the views of 134 global mobility executives and 3,937 professionals from over 40 countries.


International_Womens_dayPwC Women in Work Index 2016
The index ranks 33 OECD countries according to a benchmark based on key indicators of female economic empowerment: gender pay equality, the rate of female labour force participation (both in absolute terms and by comparison with men), female unemployment, and women in full-time employment. As in previous years, Scandinavian countries top the rankings. Switzerland remains in tenth place.


International_Womens_day_2Next Generation Survey 2016: The Female Perspective
This report looks at the perspective of female family business leaders on the basis of a survey of 73 women in 25 countries. Despite the fact that companies with women at board or operational management level often do better, a lot more grassroots work will have to be done if more women are to get the opportunity to take on these roles. The report concludes that one in five women don’t believe they have the same chances of success as men in the family business.

Please contact Charles Donkor or Jasmin Weisshaar if you have any questions.


UBS/PwC Billionaires report: The changing faces of billionaires

UBS/PwC Billionaires report reveals female billionaires outpace males


UBS Group AG and PwC have launched their joint deep dive report, The changing faces of billionaires”, which explores the role of women in building lasting financial legacies and how wealth is preserved across multiple generations.

The report’s findings, which build upon UBS/PwC’s 2015 Billionaires Report released last May, “Master architects of great wealth and lasting legacies”, revealed that the number of female billionaires is growing faster than the number of their male counterparts. Women have been controlling greater average wealth than men and becoming more influential in family businesses, philanthropic enterprises and governance. The report also highlights the fleeting nature of great wealth, finding that only 126 billionaires or 44% of the class of 1995 are billionaires today. It underscores the strategies these prevailing billionaires have employed to build and preserve lasting legacies.

Find more Information here.

Swiss pension plans are changing – your views

Swiss “1e” pension plans allow individuals to choose their own savings investments from a pool of pre-defined investment choices for contributions paid on earnings above CHF 126’900 a year. These plans face change in 2016. These changes are likely to make these plans more attractive to employers and result in changes to current employer pension funds. You can find more details in the overview below.

If you represent an employer or pension fund, whether that is in fund management, HR or finance, we’d like to hear your views on these plans. This will help you and our other corporate and pension fund clients and contacts make decisions about them. The short survey is currently available in English and German and should take around 5 minutes to complete.

English: 1e pension plan survey

Deutsch: Umfrage über 1e Vorsorgepläne

Please note:

  • The survey will only ask questions based on your knowledge today.
  • Some pages are skipped depending on the answers you give.
  • The survey is anonymous, but by including your email address at the end we can ensure you get the results as soon as they are available.

An overview of the changes



2015 Global Equity Incentives Survey

PwC and the National Association of Stock Plan Professionals (NASPP) are pleased to release the 2015 Global Equity Incentives Survey (GEIS) Executive Summary. Our survey is one of the most comprehensive studies available on the design and administration of equity incentive compensation plans for multinational companies. GEIS

Our 2015 GEIS illustrates interesting trends and news from the marketplace. Our 2012 survey showed a return to the basics after periods of economic boom and bust. At that time, companies were heavily focused on compliance and reacting to pay for performance requirements/expectations. Our 2015 results are reflective of the continuation of globalization. Not surprisingly, our 2015 survey clearly shows that our participants (virtually all U.S. multinationals) have expanded their reach of equity grantees more globally than ever before.

To access and download the executive summary, please click here.

We hope you find the results from the 2015 survey useful as you evaluate and compare your employee equity plans to those of your peers and design plans that are effective drivers of the behaviors necessary for your company’s success in this global economy.

Drop that jargon: It’s time for new HR metaphors

„All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players: They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts.” – William Shakespeare 

Shakespeare has an invitation for us: “Imagine that we were all actors”, he asks. With his analogy between life and stage play, he chooses a lens through which the reader can look at the world. This makes it easy understand what he means; it also allows us to take the analogy further and to ask interesting questions: Are our possessions just props? Can we go “off stage”? Who is our audience?

The Power of Metaphors

Metaphors and analogies are an example of how language influences thinking in a subtle yet powerful way. On the one hand, they provide an easily accessible toolbox of mental models which ease thinking and communication. On the other hand, those very mental models rely on unspoken assumptions. Shakespeare’s analogy above suggest that there are two layers of reality (stage/audience), and that people play only one role at a time. Those assumptions remain unchallenged if we choose to use the metaphors.

Business contexts are not immune from language’s influence, as the abundance of jargons shows. Technical terms, abbreviations and buzzwords are an integral part of any discipline. Some of them cross boundaries and infect other areas. Young, conceptual disciplines such as HR are especially prone to borrowing jargon, as their language is still much more in flux as opposed to established areas such as chemistry. But if language influences thinking, wouldn’t the jargon we use influence (or bias) our decisions?

Talent Management: An Engineering Domain

Let’s take the example of Talent Management, where practitioners have become used to expressions such as “talent pipelines”, “platforms”, “lifecycles” or “recruiting”. All those terms are derived from other disciplines. In a quick and dirty text analysis of the most recent 25 articles from Harvard Business Review’s “Talent Management” category, I have found that 6 out of 10 jargon terms come from the engineering/physics area (e.g. “process”, “build”, “potential”, “system”), followed by military terms (“engage”, “recruit”, “strategy”). There are some, but only few terms from other areas.

When using these metaphors, we rely on assumptions from those very disciplines – be it a mechanistic engineering view that a “system” can be “built”, or the strategic military considerations that a “war for talent” can be “won”. But do we really want to accept those assumptions?

Where are the Other Metaphors?

Creativity techniques emphasize the importance of outside influence, stimulating “out of the box” thinking. How about using a different vocabulary for Talent Management? A change of language would introduce different mental models, challenge assumptions and help us find new approaches. Chemistry could help us find talent oxidation, free radicals and leadership crystallization; biology would introduce cross-pollination of skills, symbiotic development and talent spores; the arts might lead us to leadership genres, talent rituals and the right balance between skill expression and technique.

In the end, we might find out that the engineering language is still the best of all of those jargons – but borrowing a different toolbox for a project, workshop or strategy meeting might help you think differently about that well-worn hammer you’ve been using all those years.

What metaphors could help you rethink your talent strategy? Please contact me if you would like to discuss this topic.

People strategy for the digital age – A new take on talent

Businesses face some pressing questions about their future talent pipelines and people strategy. The pace of technological, political and economic change has left CEOs standing on constantly shifting. Just as the industrial revolution did one and a half centuries, the digital revolution is reshaping the way we live our lives and the way we work. It’s also forcing a fundamental transformation of business – changing the relationship with customers, bringing new entrants and their disruptive technologies, driving new channels, products and services, breaking down the walls between industries and, in many cases, forcing a basic rethink of the business model.

The speed of change makes it almost impossible to predict the future with any degree of certainty.
In such a climate, organisations need a credible and forward looking leader; a role that has never been more critical. CEOs need to understand how technology can improve their business and the customer experience, and plan for things that seem a distant dream. Denise Ramos, CEO of ITT Corporation, puts it like this: “You have to create multiple futures and multiple options for your company, because you don’t know when the world’s going to look like three to five years from now.”

One of the biggest headaches for CEOs is making sure that the organisation has the right people to cope with what lies ahead. There’s the basic question of planning for the skills that are needed now and in the future: Which roles will be automated? What new roles will be needed to manage and run emerging technology? What skills should the company be looking for, and training their people for? Where will we find the people we need?

But more importantly, CEOs need to be sure that the business is fit to react quickly to whatever the future may throw at it – and that means filling it with adaptable, creative people, working in a culture where energy fizzes and ideas spark into life. If they can’t be found, they must be created.

Whatever technological innovations are ahead, it’s the people that will make the difference between eventual success and failure. That’s why CEOs need a people strategy for the digital age.

Read more…

People strategy for the digital age – A new take on talent

PwC Golden Age Index – how well are countries harnessing the power of older workers?

One of the key megatrends affecting all developed countries is an ageing population. Harnessing the potential of older workers will therefore become an increasingly important source of competitive advantage for both nations and businesses.

To explore how the OECD economies compare with each other in this regard, PwC has developed a new ‘Golden Age index’ comparing how well they are utilising workers aged 55 and over. The index includes relative employment, earnings and training rates for older workers for 34 OECD countries over the period since 2003.

Key findings include:

  • Most OECD countries’ employment rate has risen over time, so our relative index performance remains middling (19th out of 34)
  • If e.g. the UK could boost its employment rate for 55-69 year olds to match that of Sweden, the best performing EU country, this could boost annual UK GDP by around £100 billion (5.4%).
  • The top five countries in the index are Iceland, New Zealand, Sweden, Israel and Norway, with Chile a fast riser since 2003 in 6th place. Switzerland is on place 11.
  • The US, South Korea, Japan and Estonia round out the top 10 on the index.

PwC Golden Age Index – how well are countries harnessing the power of older workers?

Read more…

Female millennials in financial services

Female Millennial in FSStrategies for a new era of talent

Diversity and inclusiveness are now competitive imperatives within an evolving financial services (FS) marketplace; investors want it, boards want it and clients demand it.

As businesses look to broaden their talent pool and attract people with fresh ideas and experiences, nearly 60% of the FS industry leaders taking part in PwC’s latest global CEO survey say their organisation now has a strategy to promote diversity. More than three-quarters of these CEOs believe that diversity has enhanced innovation, customer satisfaction and overall business performance.

Female millennials are set to play a critical part in future FS growth. With many organisations still finding it difficult to root out aspects of their culture which could lead to excessive risk-taking or regulatory breaches, attracting more women at all levels of the organisation could provide the catalyst for a real shift in attitudes and behaviour.

So what does the generation of women entering the workforce and moving into management positions want from the organisations they work for? We’ve just carried out a survey of more than 8,000 female millennials (women born between 1980 and 1995) from around the world, of which nearly 600 are working in FS (banking and capital markets, insurance and asset management). The findings provide valuable insights into the perceptions, aspirations and characteristics of women in FS, which can help your business to define and refine strategies for recruitment, retention and career development.

Download the full report here.

If you have any further questions please contact me.

Moving HR to the Cloud?

Navigate key barriers to boost success.

It’s no surprise that more and more companies are moving their HR applications to the cloud to boost innovation, increase flexibility and control costs. The shift, now at a frenzied pace, is fueling tremendous growth in the HR technology space. It is also creating uncertainty for HR business and technology leaders who are struggling with important questions such as:

  • Is the cloud right for my organization?
  • Does it make sense to move everything to the cloud or just certain process areas?
  • Is the move paying off for the early adopters?
  • What challenges are organizations facing with their migrations to cloud?

PwC’s 2014 HR Technology Survey of nearly 270 US-based companies, including a range of industries and company sizes, provides insight into these and other important issues facing today’s HR business and technology leaders. Clearly, the shift from on-premise Human Capital Management (HCM) to cloudbased HCM applications is a significant trend that cannot be ignored. Yet, despite high levels of satisfaction, HR business and technology leaders are finding that moving to the cloud requires a transformational mindset — one that many seem to undervalue and oversimplify.

The HR technology options to enable today’s business and people strategies can be overwhelming. In this paper, we’ll first look at the industry landscape, including the types of organizations moving to the cloud, top HR technology investments, and major trends driving HR cloud adoption. Next, we’ll look at primary challenges that HR business and technology leaders are encountering along the way. We’ll also provide key considerations to help smooth the transition and help make the journey worthwhile.

Download the survey results here.

If you have any further questions please contact me.

The most extraordinary technology of all

The role of people in a digital world

Capture In the digital world, everyone can be heard and everyone can contribute. We live in an age where Twitter has created an army of frontline news reporters at major events and disasters and where community forums such as tripadvisor and glassdoor roar the opinions of millions. The omnipresence of mobile devices has accelerated this trend; last year we reached the point where the number of mobile-connected devices in circulation exceeds the world’s population. Digital success is not about securing the best technology; the true value comes from the way your people use it.

During a transformation as rapid and life-altering as the digital age, the most dangerous thing an organisation can do is lose sight of the value of its people. The best, most innovative technology in the world won’t create value on its own. Success in the digital age doesn’t come down to securing the latest technology or by cutting costs through automation; it comes down to striking the right balance between digital and human innovation. A people strategy for the digital age.

Read more here.