The IT industry is "crying out" for initiatives that celebrate diversity

Tom Allen
clock • 2 min read

Michelle Cope of Allianz says that events like the Women in IT Excellence Awards help to promote female role models

The IT industry has a diversity problem, although it is starting to address it. Michelle Cope, Portfolio Architect at Allianz, thinks that initiatives like the Women in IT Excellence Awards - at which she won the Hero of the Year (Enterprise) category last year - are important in building role models for women in the industry.

"These awards help to build up the right role models [for women]. I do quite a bit of mentoring for rising stars within the architecture space, helping them to tailor their message so that we can get the right information out to our business partners. [This win] made me think, ‘Why can't I provide that mentoring to other women within Allianz?'"

She added that the industry has been "crying out" for more events like the Women in IT Awards, which was Computing's most successful first-year event ever in 2017:

"The Awards was essentially promoting the value that women have been bringing to IT for a number of years… To me, this event is essential in promoting awareness in what women bring to IT.

"The categories are as much about leadership as technology, and...those nominations showed the blending of those two things: leadership in IT, which is a set of skills that is ubiquitous for any success, whether a woman's in an IT or a business trading line."

Asked about her win, Cope said, "I felt that it was representative of me working with so many women who go above the call of duty; people whose day job and the way they think is about coaching and about empowering people to do the best thing for themselves to realise their potential, as well the benefits for the company.

"It was, to me, a huge the value that women bring and the empowerment that is happening across the industry."

This year, Cope is investing her time in courses around business architecture, as well as looking at mentoring outside of her department. She's also found that the foam cut-out cushioning her award makes a great stress ball!

Are you a women in the technology sector, or do you know one who should be recognised? Computing's Women in IT Excellence Awards return this November, and entries are open now.

You may also like
Bridging computing's diversity gap


It all starts at school

clock 17 May 2024 • 4 min read
Why I'm optimistic on International Women's Day - despite the frustratingly slow pace of change

Careers and Skills

Things are moving in the right direction, now we need to focus on speed

clock 08 March 2024 • 6 min read
Tech trends 2024: Optimisation over transformation


IT leaders are taking a pragmatic approach to the wave of new innovations on offer

clock 29 February 2024 • 20 min read

Sign up to our newsletter

The best news, stories, features and photos from the day in one perfectly formed email.

More on Leadership

The increasing role of digital in customer experience

The increasing role of digital in customer experience

The CX industry is constantly finding new ways to transform digitally and the pace of innovation shows no signs of slowing down

Martin Taylor
clock 11 June 2024 • 3 min read
UK IT Industry Awards: Applications closing soon

UK IT Industry Awards: Applications closing soon

Two weeks left to have your achievements recognised

clock 11 June 2024 • 2 min read
Computing names the UK's most influential IT leaders

Computing names the UK's most influential IT leaders

CIO, CISO, CTO, CDO – we look beyond the title to what our nominees have actually achieved

Tom Allen
clock 10 June 2024 • 2 min read