Throughout 2014, the role of women in the IT workforce has been a hot topic. With funding from tech giants and the emergence of support from groups like Women 2.0 and Girls Who Code, the year has been pivotal. Despite these changes, many believe the ‘brogrammer’ reputation in Silicon Valley and the tech world is discouraging female talent. As a result, women remain a minority, but there’s plenty of evidence to support a substantial increase in women interested in IT careers. Many are eager to establish themselves in the field, which is gradually creating more competition and a larger talent base for employers seeking tech talent. Here’s some of the ways the industry is bringing opportunities to women in tech:
Women Are Leading in Education
For the first time in two decades according to U.C. Berkeley’s digital enrollment records, there were more women than men in one computer science class. Many other universities are seeing similar increases in women pursuing computer science degrees. Virginia Tech has even placed a focus on increasing female enrollment within the Department of Computer Science. With women earning 57 percent of bachelor’s degrees nationally since the late 1990s, they are proving themselves educationally qualified for many tech positions.
Increasingly Visible Female Tech Role Models
The face of technology is changing with role models like Victoria’s Secret model Lyndsey Scott publicly sharing their passion for programming. In fact, four of the apps she has made are in the iTunes App Store, including Code Made Cool, an educational tool aimed at young women featuring actor Ryan Gosling.
Along with apps like Code Made Cool, female-targeted support and user groups like Girls Who Code, Hackbright Academy and the Women’s Coding Collective are popping up all over the country. Having access to education and strong female role models only encourages women to explore their potential in the traditionally male-dominated tech world.
Increasing Male Advocacy
In technology, there are many prominent men invested in helping women succeed in the industry, which is essential for change. Go Daddy CEO Blake Irving has partnered with the Anita Borg Institute to help advance women in tech, and women fill one-third of the company’s C-level leadership roles.
At Apple, Director of Worldwide Inclusion and Diversity Jeffrey M. Siminoff’s philosophy is that inclusion inspires innovation. He has also lead efforts to launch Women@AppleTech – an internal effort to increase the number of women in technical roles within Apple. The company has also supported The National Center for Women & Information Technology’s (NCWIT) Pacesetters Program. The program’s goal is to add 3,500 new technical women to the IT talent pool by 2016.
Adding Women to Your Talent Pool
As the environment for women in tech continues to change, the candidate pool gradually expands to include these qualified female candidates. As a result, businesses have the opportunity to have greater overall talent in their workforce. Partner with us to help you grow your talent pool.