WITBoss: Promoting Women in Technology
The absence of women in technology careers has been observed since at least 2005 and a $4 billion annual investment is now in place in the UK to rectify the gender imbalance, according to Deloitte’s TMT Predictions 2016 report. Despite this injection of cash, the number of women in IT has only increased from 17-18% in 5 years between 2010 and 2015.
It’s clear that despite the actions taken by the government and private sector in the UK to bridge the gender divide in IT, there are still huge concerns when it comes to recruiting, retaining and educating women in the sector. Deloitte’s TMT Predictions for 2016 state that fewer than 25% of IT jobs in developed countries will be held by women by the end of 2016. The reason behind this figure is due to a number of subconscious gender biases.
Gender imbalance in IT originates with education; there are simply not enough females taking computer related studies from an early age. This leads to only one out of every twenty applicants being female, according to half of the companies in a 2014 study among UK companies. Deloitte argues that there are still subconscious gender biases where both men and women are twice as likely to hire a male over a female even if they both have the same qualifications and experience. This is a problem which negatively impacts the gender divide in technology companies.
Commenting on the challenges women face when entering STEM occupations, Helen Wollaston, Chief Executive of WISE Campaign said:
“There is always more to do but we should recognise the momentum behind the recruitment of women into the IT and other professional STEM occupations in the UK. UK Professional IT employment grew by 10.2% overall in 2014/15; employment of women into the sector grew by a very encouraging 36%.
“WISE has doubled our corporate membership in the past 12 months, as more and more employers recognise the positive impact women can make on their business performance and want to be part of a growing movement for change. We offer a 10 step framework, led from the top, to create an environment where women will want to work, can be their true selves and therefore give their best.”
Read more about WISE Campaign here.
Corecom Consulting is launching a new event under the ‘Boss Series’ called WITBoss, designed to bring together women in technology across Yorkshire to network, debate, discuss hot topics, and learn from reputable and established speakers who are leaders in the industry. WITBoss is an exclusive, invitation-only event that will be held on 19 May 2016 at an intimate venue in Leeds City Centre.
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