It's estimated that women make up 19% of the tech workforce on average. As women make up 47.7% of the global workforce overall, it's clear that tech is falling behind other industries in its efforts to recruit and retain women.
While many tech business leaders are showing good intent to work towards a more diverse industry, it doesn't often translate into specific actions and the outcome is undoubtedly lacking.
This situation is unfortunate as it actually limits the growth and capabilities of tech businesses.
On a general level, a more diverse team has more diverse perspectives, so is better equipped to innovate and consider new approaches to challenges. But there is also a strong business case for encouraging more women to pursue tech roles.
A study of 22,000 businesses worldwide revealed that companies which were at least 30% female experienced a 15% increase in profitability in comparison to those with little or no gender diversity. Increasing the number of women working in tech could generate an extra £2.6 billion a year for the UK economy.
So what should businesses be doing beyond gender neutral job descriptions?
However fair hiring managers believe themselves to be, we all hold subconscious biases that impact our decision-making. Research proves that as a society, we judge men to be more capable than women for STEM roles, even if we don't make the judgement consciously.
Establishing hiring or interview quotas for diverse candidates can help prevent the judgement of candidates being clouded by our unconscious biases or the idea of ‘cultural fit'.
Just as critical as hiring is recognizing capabilities and promoting. It's been found that women remain working at a level below their competence due to lack of self-confidence, hiring biases and cultural exclusion. Promoting women into management roles and celebrating their successes are effective ways to inspire and encourage more women into the field and diversifies the culture from the top-down.
At YOOBIC, our workforce is currently 39% female, but we are committed to continuing to work towards creating the most diverse workforce we can. Actively paving the way for more women to go into tech isn't just the moral thing to do, it's essential for creating a profitable and innovative business.