It’s one of the most sought-after sectors to work for and a number of companies have used a number of initiatives to attract women in to the tech industry. And rightly so, because while you may think that tech jobs are only desirable for men, there are large number of women who are at the top of the tech game and are readily looking for the same kind of opportunities.
In fact, the tech industry needs more women and while there are certain things which are holding them back, those who have taken that leap want to stay. It will be a huge benefit to your company if the women you employ in tech jobs stay with you instead of going to a competitor and if you need a reminder as to why women in tech can often be your best talent then I only need to mention Ginni Rometty of IBM and Co-Founder of HTC, Cher Wang.
So how do you keep the women employed by you in tech roles?
A recent survey carried out on technology and recruitment in 2017 found the top 2 priorities for women working in tech in the UK were:
- The flexibility to work remotely
- Career progression
But what other priorities do women in tech jobs want?
Once you’ve got women in the company doing tech jobs then it’s important to get the culture right. Mentor programs can be crucial, particularly if the mentors are women in senior tech positions. While we know most women aren’t timid or shy and men can be perfectly good mentors too, it would be great for a company to show that women can also take charge and lead the way. This is especially crucial for those women who may have been on a career break and may not be quite up to speed with things. It’s good to have that other person they can turn to within the company when they run into difficulties or if they have a question that they need help thinking through.
4. Be like them
Women won’t want to work in a place where they are the only female on the team – unless they are hugely competitive and confident to know they are just as good as men when it comes to tech. They want to feel part of a team where there are people like them. But once they’re in the woman’s job is not only to be successful in their role, but to pull women in with them and help them to enter the tech industry and work hard to succeed.
5. Higher salary
There is nothing worse than doing a job that you know is paying less because of your gender. Whilst there are steps being taken to bridge the gender pay gap, women are more likely to stay with you if you offer them the right salary to begin with. Cloud computing firm Salesforce spent $3 million last year on bringing the salaries of female employees up to the level of their male counterparts. And they’re not the only tech firm who promote themselves as having no gender wage gap. The likes of Microsoft, Facebook, Intel, and Amazon have all published pay data that declares it has no gender wage gap.
Once you’ve got women in tech jobs to stay, like with most industries, it’s inevitable that some women will take a career break to raise a family or have other care commitments. Jacqueline de Rojas, President of TechUK, says
Estimates suggest that almost 2 million women in the UK are currently economically inactive due to caring commitments, and 76% of professional women on career breaks want to return to work. We know the tech sector has some way to go with women returners – the average tenure of a woman in the industry is seven years.
We see that the lack of proper structures in place for women who have taken leave for caring responsibilities means there is a widening gap in senior female tech leaders, as evidenced by the statistic that fewer than one in ten of the 17% of women in tech are in leadership positions.
It’s important for your company and the tech industry that they come back to work when they can and by having their top priorities in mind, it may just help you do that. With today (March 8) being International Women’s Day, now is a better time than ever to make sure women in tech are happy in their jobs.