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Diversity: How can the IT industry attract more female workers?

In a recent survey conducted by PwC, it was found that a mere 3% of female students would consider embarking on a career within the IT industry; a worrying statistic when you consider how many people graduate every year from universities across the globe. But why is the IT sector predominantly occupied by men and what can we do to attract more female workers into the industry?

A company leading by example is ‘Girls in Tech’, who run a ‘Global Classroom’ scheme designed to open prospects and opportunities for women in technology. The programme aims to prepare women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, allowing them to learn about and utilise skills in tech-based roles.

So, what can your company do to attract a more diverse workforce? We’ve considered a range of options to get you started…

1. Promote your brand.

The way you promote your company’s brand will speak volumes to potential employees. Think like a jobseeker and consider the type of company you would like to work for. Make sure your roles are presented as an equal opportunity, adjust marketing campaigns to target women and see your applications rise.

2. Offer mentoring for women.

Although the numbers are low, women are currently part of many IT related businesses. Give them the opportunity to mentor new recruits and you could see more women coming through the doors. A female mentor gives other women someone to look up to and strive to be.

3. Create advanced opportunities for women in your company.

Unfortunately, it has been proven that women are less likely to put themselves forward for roles they feel they are not completely qualified for simply because they feel someone else would be a better fit. By investing more in to the advancement of women within the IT sector, you will be investing in the advancement of your company. One idea is to arrange at least one event a year targeted specifically at women in tech. Allowing women to represent your company through these events will help to strengthen your brand and promote equal opportunity within your workplace.

4. Create equal benefits for both men and women.

Inequality in the workplace still exists. There are pay gap issues nationwide, particularly in industries such as technology. Creating an even playing field is the best thing you can do as an employer to help women succeed and that includes making many things equal – not just pay.

5. Ensure you have an inclusive culture.

It is one thing to say you include women in company culture; it is another thing to show it. When it comes to work nights out, take it in turns to do what everyone in the office likes best. Some events could welcome whole families – so not to exclude employees with family commitments – and even include fun and exciting team building activities to really bring your employees together.

The overall aim is to show any potential employee that you are a diverse and accepting company. If this is obvious to every single candidate who applies for a job, you are more likely to attract female workers into a sector which is predominantly male. In today’s age, equality is the key specification people look for, and if this is shown, more people are willing to take a chance and strive for the career they have only ever dreamt of.