As a long-time tech enthusiast, it frustrates me that in 2022 we’re still contemplating the lack of female representation in this field. My data-centric roots demand a statistic here; last year, there were 2.93 million jobs in the tech sector and just 19% of the workforce was made up of women. Statistics linked to applications for study demonstrate a nearly identical split and if you were to review female leadership roles in tech, the numbers plummet to south of 10%.
Clearly, this is not a falsely perpetuated narrative and there’s little argument over the statistical basis of the issue. An industrywide gap prevails, much to the disadvantage of businesses and suggesting a tech blind spot for women when it comes to choosing their career paths.
Gone are the days when tech jobs are reserved ‘for the boys’ – so why the continued disparity? I recently spoke at a Just IT UK Women in Tech webinar on just this topic. Here’s my breakdown of why introducing more women to the field of tech is greater than just a gender tick box exercise, instead providing true value to both businesses and women.
Three reasons women should explore a career in tech
- Never stand still
Working in tech instils an ethos of continuous growth and innovation. Most of us hope to have long, successful careers and in fact, the majority will have a work-life spanning nearly four decades. With a career in tech, you’re guaranteed never to stay standing still, always learning as technology develops and holding a seat at the table when it comes to business innovation.
2. Fantastic career prospects
The number of career opportunities in technology is growing, with up to 15,000 new jobs in the UK anticipated this year. The demand for specialist skills is only going in one direction, a competitive recruitment environment has formed, boasting strong remuneration packages, development opportunities and all in all, highly coveted roles.
3. Find your perfect fit in tech
A career in tech means something different for everyone. Whether it’s working as a data analyst, solutions architect, software developer or information security officer, roles in tech call upon different skills and personalities – you just have to find your sweet spot. What’s more, skills in tech are applicable across nearly all industries, so the (tech) world really is your oyster.
Three reasons businesses should hire more women in tech roles
- Improve business performance
An increasing number of studies indicate that diversity makes for a more profitable business – I should note, this supports the argument for diversity in all areas, not just gender. Having female influence in tech to counterbalance the male view instils greater diversity of thought and improved problem-solving.
2. Grow the skills base
Encouraging more women to enter tech fields will improve the supply of skills. After all, women make up half the population – so if we fail to open their eyes to the opportunities of working in tech, then we may be depriving the industry of the crucial resources needed to grow and thrive.
3. Design balanced products & solutions
Business solutions should be designed by the people who will be leveraging them. People (or clients) are made up of both men and women, so the female point of view in the design and implementation of tech solutions will help in the delivery of more balanced products across markets.
Women interested in exploring programming
Women interesting in pursuing UK internships in tech
Tips for businesses looking to encourage female representation in tech
TechNation, UCAS, ComputerWeekly.