How tech can attract more female professionals – Experts

Experts have said females are under-represented in the global tech space because of a myriad of reasons. They have also suggest ways on how to increase female representation in the ecosystem.

According to them, this is not an issue of an imbalanced global society but also a workforce problem, given the critical shortage of skilled tech professionals.

In an email interview with our correspondent, an investor at Techstar, Alisha Golden, said, “The pay gap between women and men, gender bias based on workplace roles, and a shortage of female role models in executive and leadership positions are the primary barriers faced by women looking to break into tech, according to a survey by the global technology association ISACA.

“Women are vastly under-represented in the global tech workforce, which is not only an issue of an imbalanced global society but also a workforce problem, given the critical shortage of skilled tech professionals. More opportunities, including job exposure, training, boot camps, and career advancement programmes are needed in order to make long overdue progress in ensuring that women are more equitably represented in the tech workforce.”

Explaining how firms should prioritise the gender gap, she stated that firms need to invest in more women and create pathways for more women to enter the tech space and thrive.

Using her firm as an example, she said, “We have clear KPIs on diversity in our portfolios, meaning our performance as a firm is measured based on this. This is an intentional approach to playing a major role in being a part of the change we want to see in a vastly male-centric industry.”

Golden added, “In order to establish equality in access and opportunity among men and women at all stages, we have to prioritise funding for women-founded companies like never before.  Women are historically over-mentored and under-funded.

“To bridge this gap, beyond capital, we need to support women founders in understanding deal terms, how to negotiate, where they have leverage, and how to lean into that. If you are an ally to women founders, you too need to speak up, write (big) checks, and go to bat for these companies when they are being reviewed, write articles on them, make them keynote speakers at your conferences, and put them on your panels, especially panels discussing real topics; not panels on things like, ‘what it’s like to be women in tech’. Let’s retire that one for now.

“Open up office hours, and make connections to potential partners, customers, investors, and supporters… This is the work for all of us.”

According to a spokesperson for Ingressive Capital, a seed stage VC, organisations need to build a more inclusive work culture and do away with any discriminatory work policies especially as it concerns equal opportunities for women such as policies around maternity leave, childcare policies, and benefits.

The spokesperson stated that to ensure that more women got into tech, the women who were already in tech needed to position themselves and show younger women that it was possible to succeed in tech no matter.

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