Vodafone launches world’s largest recruitment programme for women on career breaks

8 March 2017

MEDIA RELEASE - Vodafone today announced a major initiative designed to increase opportunities for women in the workplace.

The Vodafone ReConnect programme is designed to attract talented women who have left the workplace for an extended period of time – in most cases to raise a family – who would like to return to work on a full-time or flexible basis.

The programme will operate across 26 countries – with a target of 1,000 ReConnect recruits worldwide within three years – and will complement other Vodafone global initiatives focused on encouraging and supporting women in the workplace, including Vodafone’s pioneering global maternity policy announced in March 2015.

Vodafone New Zealand Human Resources Director, Antony Welton, said Vodafone is committed to attracting and retaining women through flexible work practises that support work life balance.

“We are a company passionate about creating an inclusive environment that values all differences, and that’s by design rather than by chance. Innovations such as our global maternity policy and now our new ReConnect programme can make a real difference to women who work for us today and who will work for us in the future.

“One of the ways we’re creating a flexible workplace for ReConnect candidates in New Zealand is offering them the ability to work for four days and be paid for five for their first six months back at work,” said Antony.

Amber Quinnell, Vodafone New Zealand’s Rural Segment Marketing Manager took part in the pilot ReConnect programme after a 12 month career break to raise her first child.

“I’ve always been really career driven, so to take a year out from work to spend that time focussed on my daughter was a big decision. Returning to work after being a stay-at-home mum can be really daunting, but it is manageable with the right support. ReConnect gave me this.”

Vodafone is committed to increasing the proportion of women in management, leadership and frontline roles. Under the Global ReConnect programme, up to 500 women on career breaks have the opportunity to be recruited into management roles over the next three years, accounting for around 10 per cent of all Vodafone external management hires over that period. In addition, Vodafone may recruit up to 500 women and men on career breaks into a range of frontline roles.

The ReConnect programme will include:

  • Recruitment outreach activities to make contact with, and raise awareness among women on career breaks;
  • A permanent role in the Vodafone business;
  • Training and induction programmes to refresh and enhance professional skills and help ReConnect candidates prepare for re-entry to the workplace; and
  • Employment terms designed to reflect the competing pressures on working women’s lives, including flexible working options and phased return to work. Vodafone New Zealand will offer ReConnect candidates the ability to work for four days and be paid for five for their first six months back at work.

The 26 countries where Vodafone has an operating business are: Albania, Australia, the Czech Republic, the DRC, Egypt, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Kenya, Lesotho, Malta, Mozambique, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, South Africa, Spain, Tanzania, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

Vodafone launches world’s largest recruitment programme for women on career breaks