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Gender patterns for aspirations for transitional employment and training and development in local government

Hitendra Pillay (Learning and Professional Studies, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia)
Megan Tones (Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia)
Kathy Kelly (Local Government Association of Queensland Inc., Brisbane, Australia)

Gender in Management

ISSN: 1754-2413

Article publication date: 19 July 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the patterns of transitional employment (TE) aspirations and training and development (T&D) needs of women within local government.

Design/methodology/approach

A quantitative survey methodology was used to identify aspirations in a sample of 1,068 employees from the Australian Local Government Association.

Findings

Mature‐aged women were very interested in continuous learning at work despite their limited formal education. Their training preferences consisted of informal delivery face‐to‐face or online in the areas of management or administration. Younger women were interested in undertaking university courses, while a minority were interested in blue collar occupations.

Practical implications

Through the identification of patterns of TE and T&D aspirations, long term strategies to develop and retain women in local government may be developed. Findings suggest that mature‐aged women would benefit from additional T&D to facilitate entry into management and senior administration positions, as well as strategies to facilitate a shift in organizational climate.

Social implications

Mature‐aged women were found to be a potentially untapped resource for management and senior administrative roles owing to their interest in developing skills in these fields and pursuing TE. Younger women may also benefit from T&D to maintain their capacity during breaks from employment. Encouragement of women in non‐traditional areas may also address skill shortages in the local government.

Originality/value

Mature‐aged women were found to be a potentially untapped resource for management and senior administrative roles owing to their interest in developing skills in these fields and pursuing TE. Younger women may also benefit from T&D to maintain their capacity during breaks from employment. Encouragement of women in non‐traditional areas may also address skill shortages in the local government.

Keywords

Citation

Pillay, H., Tones, M. and Kelly, K. (2011), "Gender patterns for aspirations for transitional employment and training and development in local government", Gender in Management, Vol. 26 No. 5, pp. 367-379. https://doi.org/10.1108/17542411111154903

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited