Diversity & Gender Equality in the Workplace
Women hold only 25% of computing jobs
Diversity and gender equality have been two of the hottest topics over the last years, especially the gender gap within the tech industry. According to a recent study, although the number of men and women studying or working in tech is unbalanced, it’s interesting to analyse how many women actually have tech roles. This number is slowly increasing as companies start to embrace the need to reduce the gender gap and recognise that all genders can have the same working skills.
But why did this happen? Organisations understood that the change should be made internally and replicated externally. In order to increase the number of women in tech roles, CIOs and CTOs should start focusing on their organisation’s culture and unique values.
In the same research, about 74% of young girls expressed interest in STEM fields and computer science. This means that the gender gap and mentality is already changing, given that young girls are demonstrating more enthusiasm for the tech industry. In order to answer their needs, companies should adopt a proactive role and try to unlock equality in the workplace.
Some companies have already understood this and started implementing the necessary changes. One example is RBS, that aims to have 50% women in senior roles by 2030. Whether organisations want to increase the number of women inside their companies or to have more openness for them to rise to senior roles, companies that embrace these changes, besides increasing their retention rates, will be promoting a workplace that’s focused on decreasing the gender gap and building an equal workplace of opportunities.
According to Accenture’s research, ‘’a culture of equality benefits the entire organisation’’. By adopting a culture of gender equality, companies are driving diversity and with that, they’ll have a clear advantage when it comes to attracting and retaining talent. Those organisations begin to be recognised for their good practices when it comes to the gender gap and many people will want to work for them for this reason and not just for the job or salary being offered.
How can organisations embrace diversity in the workplace?
A recent Swedish study stated that there is still a gender gap in IT fields. So the first step to fight this, is accepting and opening doors for employees with different experiences, backgrounds and gender. This will bring several new ideas to the business. Companies that accept this individuality will benefit from a set of individual experiences which might help them when it comes to the development of an effective strategy that meets the needs of both employees and clients.
‘’I believe companies are aware that through diversity, they are ultimately promoting their employees’ individuality and that by doing so, the employees’ feel better connected, more committed and take better advantage of their competences to help the company grow’’, says Steve Bell, Group Development Director at Stelfox.
More Innovation. Embracing different cultural perspectives, backgrounds and tastes can lead to higher levels of creativity and drive innovation. Having unique employees working together will allow everyone to exchange ideas and views on specific matters. This process might actually help employees create different products and services, taking both their differences and similarities into account.
Global Impact. The possibility to have different ways of thinking and working can be a step forward when it comes to connecting with our customers. Each client is unique. Indeed, they all have particular specifications and special requests. Having multidisciplinary teams with such unique mindsets can help us offer exactly what each global customer is looking for.
Wellbeing at work. Workers that feel they’re respected and that their unique perspective is valued will always give more than 100%. In addition, they will be committed to the company, helping it reach the next level.
Diversity & Gender Equality will continue to have tremendous global importance. Companies that actually grab this opportunity will be able to connect with their employees and take advantage of their individuality to grow as a business and to have a positive impact all over the world.
Creating a diversity & gender equality strategy might be the first step and it will require some effort. Nonetheless, in the end, there will be undeniable advantages for both businesses and people, making sure this process becomes a vital part of the growth of any business.