Maha Agriculture Microfinance GEARS Up!


BCGE’s Leader-tier member, Maha Agriculture Microfinance, has successfully completed the Gender Equality Assessment, Results and Strategies (GEARS) assessment to understand gaps, opportunities and strengths in companies’ workplace gender equality strategies.

This light-touch assessment helps to understand the current status of the organisation’s workplace gender equality journey, in which gender balance and employee movements are revealed. The assessment also provides insights that will inform the development of the organisation’s overarching WGE strategy. The GEARS assessment is one of the premium benefits for BCGE’s Leader-tier members.

“Maha is embarking on becoming a triple-bottom-line organisation. We need to understand our social performance and impact. The GEARS assessment is just the tool for an evidence-based evaluation to know where we stand and address our improvement areas. We believe the insights from the GEARS assessment will pave the way for the betterment of our workplace practices, and contribute to the overall company’s strategy and goals,” said Saw Su Latt Kyaw, Senior Human Resources Manager of Maha Agriculture Microfinance Co., Ltd.

Having undertaken GEARS successfully, Maha Agriculture accumulated a leading gender pay equity practice and policy status on remuneration, pay gap analysis, and compensation practice. Furthermore, Maha Agri is committed to improving WGE changes through developing a talent and succession planning framework which support balancing gender composition at all levels, establishing a monitoring & evaluation system to track talent movement with the aspect of gender composition, and providing anti-harassment and bullying training series for all employees which contribute to achieving Maha Agri’s vision.

Since joining BCGE in November 2020, Maha began their workplace gender equality journey by committing to diversity and inclusion excellence through the GEARS assessment. Ma Saw Su Latt Kyaw noted that “Maha always celebrates the power of differences. We want to be in the like-minded community that reflects our company values – a diverse and inclusive approach to service. By joining BCGE, we believe that they will support us in delivering excellence in workplace culture and practices.”

Developed by Investing in Women, an Australian Government initiative, in partnership with the Australian Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) and a business coalition such as BCGE, GEARS is currently used by four countries in Southeast Asia: Myanmar, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Maha Agriculture has taken the lead as the first corporation in Myanmar to drive workplace gender equality and inclusion within their organisation.

Organisations utilise GEARS to assess progress on ten focus areas, including leadership and accountability, gender pay equity, workforce gender composition, recruitment and promotion, and preventing and addressing gender-based harassment and discrimination, sexual harassment and bullying. Insights gleaned through GEARS inform organisation actions and enhance workplace policies.

Maha Agriculture Microfinance is a deposit-taking financial service provider licensed under the Microfinance Law of Myanmar (2011) and began operations on 29 April 2013 under the Myanmar Companies Act. Maha Agriculture Microfinance has 37 operational branches. Maha is currently co-owned by Myanma Awba Group and the International Finance Corporation (IFC).

BCGE offers a service for gender assessment and certification that is international, regional and association-level for businesses. Organisation assessments proposed an evidence-based effort to promote an inclusive culture of learning, continuous improvement and data-based decision making.