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Women in Tech: Gender Equality

Updated: Jun 24, 2021

With the Tech Industry still a predominantly male sector, we're taking a look into the gender gap in the market whilst discussing the companies that stand for inclusivity within the work place.

Research shows that diverse companies perform better, hire better talent, have higher engagement amongst their employees and retain workers better than the companies that don't place as high a focus on diversity and inclusion. Despite this, women still remain underrepresented within the tech industry, but why?

The gender gap in technology seems to start in the education system and continues to carry on through all stages of life, with the options of working in such an industry not even considered as an opportunity, nor having the right information about career pathways into technology.

Even though collective efforts have helped to increase the percentage of women within these sectors - recent studies have concluded the gender gap for women in technology is actually worse than it has been in previous years.

Studies show that 50% of women leave their tech careers by the age of just 35, leaving at a higher rate of 45% over men within the industry.

After looking into gender equality within the Tech & IT industry, there are some key companies that really act upon the issue and aim to help make a difference for the future.

Companies to Follow

A company that comes to mind is Depop, who are highly determined to be completely inclusive with diversity in the work place. Chief Technology Officer Remo Gettini has said that building diversity into all levels of the engineering department has been a high priority.

“We make a conscious effort to ensure that our jobs are designed and advertised in a way that removes any perceived barrier to entry … creating specifications that are gender neutral and avoiding language and phrases that are too tribal or male-oriented, such as ‘pack leader’ and ‘competitive environment’. Instead of creating an impression of a hierarchy, we want to be seen as a place of collaboration.” - Remo Gettini.

With 57% of the executive leadership team being female, building diversity into all levels of the engineering department has been a priority of Depop's for a while and they continue to stand by this.

Remo Gettini has also worked with Makers Academy, a coding bootcamp, that helps to recruit promising female engineers. The bootcamp teaches students not only how to code, but to learn and develop continuously to prepare them for the fast-paced world of tech in as little as 12 weeks - with more than a third of its graduates being women, many have gone on to work for brands such as Deloitte, Google, BBC, and the Financial Times.

Makers launched the UK's first Women in Software Power List, which showcases role models for the next generation of engineers and to reframe the conversation around diversity within tech.

Furthermore, Makers aim to provide talented diverse workers for their partners, and they provide advice on how to make an organisation more inclusive and welcoming to new potential tech workforce.

"The amount of work that we do on this front is obviously not seen because it involves us actually going into a company and fixing the way its engineering culture works, fixing how they write a job description, fixing how they do their interviews and tech recruitment processes." - Ruben Kostucki, Chief Operating Officer, Makers Academy.

Anne Gretland, CEO of Fotoware, has been a champion for diversity within technology. In 2018, she became CEO of the company Fotoware. In that time, the company has grown internationally, with employees in Australia and Sweden, whilst being predominantly based in Norway. Fotoware is a DAM Solutions provider, with over 150 certified engineers and product experts across the globe partnered to its brand.

Anne has always been passionate about technology, and has previously worked at one of the biggest tech companies in the world, Microsoft. She has made technology a staple part of her life and her career, and has clearly been successful from it. Anne also champions the positive impact technology has had on education, and says herself "thanks to Google and Wikipedia, all you need is a device and an internet connection and you have automatic access to education material and learning".

Anne has stated that education has a huge part to play in influencing women to take up roles in IT. She believes that the path starts as early as age 8 or 9 - when young girls begin to form their own interests and choose their hobbies.

Whilst discussing education, Anne has made it clear that she thinks programming, coding and IT should become as essential to the education programme as reading and writing is today; by doing so, this will develop a generation of young girls and boys who are passionate about programming, which will then create a diverse and equal technology sector from the outset.

Lastly we had a look at Starling Bank, since the launch in 2017 by Anne Boden - the challenger bank has opened more than two million accounts, including more than 300,000 small business accounts. The new fintech unicorn's total gross lending now officially exceeds £2 billion, while deposits top £5.4 billion.

'When women master technology they tend to rise to the top very quickly because they have greater empathy.'

"People invest in people with a similar outlook and background to themselves. In the technology space, the venture capitalists tend to have been tech entrepreneurs and they tend to be men. It is odd that people think tech is something a man does. I have always thought tech was quite feminine. It is all about maths, structure being neat, the beauty of code." - Anne Boden.

At Talented Recruitment Group, we couldn't agree more with inclusivity within the work place. As a Recruitment Group that works specifically in the IT & Tech industry, alongside FMCG, we have a great part to play in making a difference and we believe it's extremely important to take gender equality into account during the entire process of Recruitment.

After looking into gender equality within this sector, we have seen some outstanding companies and startups all run by women such as; Bumble, founded by Whitney Wolfe Herd, Elvie, founded by Tania Bole, Canva, Co founded by Melanie Perkins and many more!

We hope to see a positive difference with women in the Tech Industry and we hope to make a difference over the next few years.

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