Mozzart against discrimination in the labor market
In our company, almost 70 percent of employees are women, and 58.7 percent of women are in the management staff. Currently, 200 of our female colleagues are on pregnancy or maternity leaves, and upon their return, they will have the same positions and equal opportunities for further advancement and training. This is evidenced by our employees in the field of IT industry, communications, marketing, architecture, economics and mathematics.
In our company, the policy of gender equality and non-discrimination is fully observed, so Mozzart is an example in Southeast Europe, where one of the burning issues is the unequality between men and women in business and other areas of life. Gender discrimination and gender equality are issues that society, government and community must constantly work on, especially when we know that the unpleasant situations that women in Serbia face during employment and during their careers have not disappeared. Pregnant women are laid off, and mothers are welcomed as redundant.
A survey on gender equality at work conducted by Ipsos agency in Serbia in 2018 cites job loss after maternity leave as the first biggest challenge faced by women. The second biggest challenge is the employer's lack of understanding for sick leaves due to illnesses of children…
Marija Božović, human resources department director at Mozzart, has been with the company for more than 11 years and says that there are between 100 and 150 colleagues at pregnancy or maternity leave at any given time.
- As the company grows, and today we have nearly 2,500 employees, this number is increasing. This year, we have as many as 200 colleagues at pregnancy or maternity leave, which is a clear indicator of the security which our company provides to its employees. After the maternity leave, each colleague was returned to the same position and given equal opportunities for further advancement and training as before the leave - Božović explained.
Gender discrimination in the labor market often begins during the employment process, when women are more often than men asked questions about marital status and family planning. In general, 47% of women surveyed and 28% of men surveyed had experienced gender discrimination at previous or current jobs, according to a survey conducted by “The Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation“, sponsored by the European Union.
According to the latest report of the World Economic Forum on the state of gender equality, the major inequality of women is visible in the political sphere, followed by inequality in the field of economy. Women are provided with less opportunity for advancement and are underestimated due to deeply-rooted prejudices about the lower value of women's work. More than half of the respondents experienced discrimination when it comes to job advancement.
- We employ experts in IT industry, communications, marketing, architects, economists, mathematicians… We try to participate actively in combating discrimination in the labor market by setting an example and creating conditions for economic independence of women, reducing the pay gap and promoting equality between women and men in the areas of decision making. In the entire business policy, we are working to secure that not any of our colleagues feel threatened, worry about their job, if and when they wish to become mothers - explains Marija Božović.
She adds that what they strive for are balanced teams, given that in practice they have noticed that gender-balanced teams bring the best results and the most productive products.
- If we take into account that many games of chance are mostly related to the male population, it is probably quite a surprise that a large number of women participate in the development of every service and product that Mozzart places, often as project managers or concept creators. We are proud of the mechanisms and business policies which we have introduced because they enable full respect for gender equality, equal chances for advancement and training for colleagues - concluded Marija Božović.
Company support in all aspects
- Mozzart enabled me to develop in business terms without any "consequences" that, at the time when I started working, I still chose to be, above all, a mother - said Milena Poletto, employed in the position of project assistant of the IT director in Mozzart.
- I started working in June 2016, and shortly afterwards t I learned that I would become a mother. I went on maternity leave after only 2 months of work and the company had no obligation to return me to work after maternity leave, because at the time of going on leave I was on a fixed-term employment contract. After 20 months of absence, I returned to work to my previous position, with the same conditions, with the full support of all colleagues who have a lot of understanding that a small child is waiting for me at home - Milena reveals.