The lack of women in the tech field is a common topic of conversation. According to Deloitte Global, women hold less than 25 percent of information technology (IT) jobs in developed countries. However, though the numbers do show a very male dominated field of work, women should not be put off of joining a career in IT or tech because of this. It should instead be a point of inspiration, something to change. It can undoubtedly be difficult in a male dominated sector, but the more women become involved in the tech world, the greater chance we have at the future of tech reflecting everyone, not just a portion of the population.
The lack of women in tech has finally gained the recognition it deserves in recent years. Numerous studies are coming out, Best Places to Work has a separate award ‘Best Places to Work For Women’, and women (and men) across the globe are working to create changes for work equality for both genders. Within the tech field, artificial intelligence in particular has gained more momentum and has solidified its existence in the future of our modern and data-centric world, so it is especially important that women are involved in the creation of intelligence software.
Geek Girl Risig held an interview with Lolita Taub, a venture capitalist at K Fund, a firm in Madrid, who emphasized, “AI will pass on the biases of its creators and the data its creators feed it. If we want there to be a woman’s perspective in the new world of AI, we need women to be part of it—and women of diverse backgrounds at that.”
The last thing we need is for outdated views or prejudices to become a deep-rooted part of AI software’s programming, simply because there aren’t enough women at the forefront creating it.
If you want to beat the statistics, here are just a couple of the strategies you can use to be an active participant in the tech world:
- If you have professional experience outside of the tech industry, that could be a great stepping stone to land a tech job. Remember, a tech job does not just mean “software engineer” or something incredibly specific or data centric. If you are in marketing, sales, HR, law, etc., you could continue on the same career path, just in a different industry.
- Reach out to your network. It is so important to have a mentor, and then to also become a mentor. As your relationship builds, your mentor could also be a great connection to discuss any challenges that come up in the industry.
- Become active in women in business clubs or organizations. Some companies even have an internal group, as well as many communities. It is a great way of sharing ideas, frustrations, and most importantly, solutions.
- Catch up on the latest developments and educational materials. There are many buzzwords amongst the industry, and doing an introductory course(s) to tech topics can help you with interviews and once you land the job! Depending on what position catches your interest, it is most likely not necessary to know all the technical terms.
There are plenty of both females and males who want to support more women becoming active in the tech world. It is productive and very natural for the women to gather to support one another, but it is important to involve men in fighting for gender equality at the workplace. The more open conversation and support there is, the better for everyone involved.
The classic cliché, “we have to be the change we want to see in the world” is entirely true in this case. It may be easy to say, but it takes action. The world is becoming more and more reliant on technology, and it is changing the face of many aspects of everyday life, especially business. It is vital that women and minorities are well represented and do not get left behind. Keep fighting to have all voices be heard.
Photo by Tyler Nix
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