Goldman Sachs Starts Childcare Service for Sick Kids in Japan

(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has introduced a childcare program in Japan that specializes in looking after employees’ sick children, stepping up efforts to retain more female workers and improve diversity.

Under the program, when a child falls ill the bank will dispatch a babysitter or nurse from a local provider on request within two to three hours. It’s the first service to focus on sick children at Goldman Sachs worldwide, according to personnel manager Akiko Koda.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has been trying to keep more women in the workforce, borrowing the “womenomics” concept coined by Goldman Sachs Chief Japan Strategist Kathy Matsui. That has proven to be a tough task given the still-widespread belief in Japan that women should be the main caregiver for children and even aging parents.

“Even though almost half of our graduate hires are women, the truth is that many tend to leave the firm before waiting for promotion,” Koda, head of the human capital management division at Goldman Sachs Japan Co. in Tokyo, said in an interview.

Women accounted for 22 percent of Goldman Sachs’s executives and senior managers in the U.S. last year, according to a company disclosure. Incoming Chief Executive Officer David Solomon has pledged to boost the number of women in senior roles and achieve gender parity.

Hiroko Matsumoto, a Tokyo-based spokeswoman, declined to comment on the management ratio for Japan.

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