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“Currently there is insufficient data on the number of women in the aviation workforce. At a time when the industry is facing unprecedented shortages of qualified personnel, understanding these key gaps in the workforce can lead to strategies to not only expand the workforce but also enhance diversity."

The systems of yesterday are giving us the results of today.

Hera’s work in research is to fill in the gaps in data because we can’t manage what we don’t measure.

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  • The share of women with active airmen certificates has not increased over 8% in more than 10 years.

  • Studies have demonstrated that diversifying talent in the workplace adds unique perspectives for problem solving and advancing the organization


  • Focusing on talent diversity and inclusive recruiting specifically for women provides organizations access to an immense talent pool.


  • Access to an immense talent pool will lead to increased women applicants and hires and may ultimately improve employee retention.

  • Corporations that embrace gender diversity on their executive teams were more competitive and 21% more likely to experience above-average profitability.

  • Organizations also had a 27% likelihood of outperforming their peers on longer-term value creation.


  • Different perspectives on customer needs, product improvements, and company wellbeing fuel a better business.

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  • The aviation data shows a sharp decline in female commercial pilots after the age of 29, in fact there is a 55% decrease in commercial pilot licenses held by women aged 25-29 versus 35-39 years. While according to the CDC, the number of live births per 1,000 women was greatest in those aged 30-34 years.


  • Overall across industries, research has shown that  43% of highly skilled women leave the workforce after becoming mothers. 86% of working mothers will leave a job for an opportunity that better supports their work and life considerations. 75% of women surveyed believe employer support of work-life flexibility is the most critical criteria for feeling respected at work.

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  • We see that there is a dramatic decrease in commercial pilot certificates held by women at a time when most become caregivers.



  • Research shows that 86% of working mothers will leave a job for an opportunity that better supports their work, family, and other life considerations and aviation is no different. Women in aviation experience an even larger workforce disparity given the lack of diverse and inclusive recruitment efforts and flexible work arrangements in the industry.

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  • The COVID-19 pandemic has shed light on how caregivers, primarily women, leaving the workforce impact the overall economy.



  • The Center for American Progress has suggested the risk of mothers leaving the labor force and reducing work hours in order to assume caretaking responsibilities amounts to $64.5 billion per year in lost wages and economic activity.


  • There is a paucity of data in the literature to quantify; however, we know this has been happening in aviation prior to the pandemic based on the gender disparity statistics and personal narratives of women aviators.

  • The pandemic has been a catalyst to the notion that we need new systems, we need a way to retain women and primary caregivers in the workforce.


  • Aviation can work with Hera today to lean into the shift that is happening with the demand for a new worker experience and build a new more inclusive workforce.


  • In order to recruit more women to the aviation department, organizations will need to focus on understanding their culture and current state around recruiting and retaining women and caregivers.

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Source: Lutte, Rebecca. (2019). Women in Aviation: A Workforce Report.

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  • With the identification of gaps, they will have to build a road map to actively move to a future state.

  • Hera can guide and lead the industry on a journey to empower, cultivate and transform through the above insights.


  • This will allow businesses to leave behind the practices of yesterday, providing them with the systems needed to support diversity, equality, and inclusion results demanded of today’s industry for a sustainable and competitive future. 

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