Most of today’s businesses are tech-driven, and yet there are fewer women in tech which makes organisations gender-imbalanced. Since tech will be one of the most important fields for years to come, it cannot be devoid of women. Plenty of recent studies have linked companies with increased gender diversity with increased ROI. Moreover, tech jobs are some of the best-paying jobs, and failing to include women creates socio-economic disparity in societies.
On 8th March, the International Women’s Day, most organisations make a beeline to bridge their workforce gender gap, as part of a PR exercise. Clearly, gender gaps in organisations cannot be filled with once a year events or social media posts, the root cause behind fewer women in tech needs to be addressed and amended, continuously.
Some of the steps that could boost the influx of women in the tech sector are:
- Diverse leadership – An organisation that employs people who look the same and think the same has little room for new thoughts and creativity. A diverse leadership consisting of men and women from varied cultures and backgrounds ensures fairplay and a diverse workforce, which in turn has a positive effect on employee satisfaction and retention, thereby increasing customer satisfaction and ROI.
- Inclusive culture – While the principle of gender equality in the workplace is generally accepted, discriminatory practices persist in many organisations. Demeaning comments from male colleagues is a norm in organisations that encourage or remain passive to bro cultures. Often women are blamed as attention seekers or drama queens for shedding light upon unacceptable behaviour by their male counterparts, and the gaslighting episodes are brushed under the carpet. Inclusive workplaces with unprejudiced senior leadership and HR take a fair stance on gender bias, and ensure women are treated on a par with men, not only in terms of equal wages, but also by providing conducive conditions to contribute to the organisation.
- Encouraging more women in STEM (Science, technology, engineering and mathematics) – There are few female role models working in STEM roles in the male-dominated tech field, which is a discouraging factor for young girls. Seeing women who have succeeded in STEM helps inspire and motivate young girls, especially when they can relate to these role models. Encouraging more girls into STEM will ensure a balanced workforce in the future. Girls usually drop out of STEM education or the tech industry because of bro culture, gender wage gaps and unfair opportunities for career advancement. Diverse leadership that ensures inclusive and equal opportunity work cultures also help in attracting more women into tech.
Women’s and girls’ empowerment is essential for economic growth and social development. I am a woman in tech and passionate about the subject. If you share this passion or have ideas that can improve the statistics of women in tech, let’s get in touch!