International Journal of Business and Social Science

ISSN 2219-1933 (Print), 2219-6021 (Online) DOI: 10.30845/ijbss

Muslim Women Career Advancement: A Study of Indonesian Public Service
Ilhaamie binti Abdul Ghani Azmi, Sharifah Hayati Syed Ismail, Siti Arni Basir

Although Islam demands women to give priority on their families instead of their career, Muslim women have evidenced great achievement in their career and professional life. This article tries to study the facilitators and barriers of Muslim women’s career advancement in Indonesian civil service. Using survey that was developed based on past literature, 33 usable questionnaires were analyzed which amounted to 22.45% rate of response. The questionnaires were distributed to three ministries in Jakarta, West Java and three ministries in Aceh, Sumatera by using convenience sampling technique. The study found that there are lots of facilities provided by the Indonesian public service to the Muslim women public servant in order to ease the consequences of working on their families such as child care, job sharing, flexible hours, longer maternity leave and working from home. On top of that, policies available that support the women are treating them with the same trust and confidence, giving them the same assignment, paying them comparable salaries as men and not to relocate them for the sake of career advancement. Furthermore, the factors that contribute to their career success were experience, education, seniority, interpersonal skills, ability in tackling superiors, commitment and dedication, support from superiors, colleagues and family and leadership styles. On the other hand, there are some factors that hinder Muslim women from career advancement which are preference for family, limited access to professional training, personality, lack of leadership charisma, confidence, qualification power; prestigious developmental assignments and informal network, society expectation, gender bias, no mentoring system, low self esteem and not taken seriously. Thus, gender is not a factor of impediment towards career advancement but capabilities and characters are. The Indonesian public service has taken all measures to ensure that Muslim women are equally represented in decision making levels especially in terms of policies and facilities. Furthermore, the respondents show positive attitude toward their career advancement even though they admitted that they are facing some barriers that could hinder their career progression.

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