Over the past few decades, women have made tremendous strides in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers. However, taking a closer look at the numbers, women only make up a mere fraction of the world’s workforce in technology-related fields. In the United States, only 23% of the STEM labor force is represented by women. And alarmingly, only 18% of new computer science bachelor’s degrees are earned by women, according to ComputerScience.org.
Needless to say, when it comes to changing the game and closing the gender gap in the technology industry, there is still much work to be done. But the situation is not all doom and gloom. Many enterprises are making a strong, focused effort to increase representation of women in critical tech fields, like engineering, coding and cybersecurity, and there are many good reasons to continue fighting for more diversity and gender equality in the workplace.
Studies show that diverse companies achieve more innovation, more engagement and even more profits. In fact, according to Gartner, through 2022, 75% of organizations with diverse and inclusive decision-making teams were expected to exceed their targeted financial goals. What’s more, an inclusive company culture is proven to result in higher work engagement. McKinsey reports that employees who feel included are approximately three times more likely than their peers to feel excited by and committed to their organization’s mission.
Interested in learning how to level the playing field and support the representation of women in tech? Here are five key ways to help make it happen.
1. Hire and Promote Women Across Your Team
Hiring more women may sound simple, but many companies don’t know where to begin. To support hiring more women at your organization, start at the very beginning — the application and interview process. Take a close look at your job descriptions to ensure they are gender neutral. It is also important to include women on the interview panel, which helps demonstrate that diversity is valued at your company.
Same goes for promoting women in tech roles. It is critical to base promotion decisions on factual evidence and proven achievements, in addition to providing expanded training opportunities for learning and development for further career advancement.
At Involta, we believe in gender equality at work and are developing a robust diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) strategy to bolster our efforts to attract and retain women. The IT-managed services and data center business are competitive with respect to attracting industry talent, so we pay close attention to the underlying elements of culture, benefits and work environment to attract and retain the best talent. Currently, our female workforce is far above industry standard, and we continue to work on growing this area.
To learn more about Involta’s efforts to promote a diverse workforce, read our ESG report here.
2. Embrace Mentorships and Lateral Moves Into Tech-Focused Roles for the Win!
Developing a mentorship program can prove to be an invaluable way to empower women in tech roles at your company. Having a role model, especially for those just beginning their careers, can help strengthen relationships across your female employee base and inspire the next generation of female tech leaders. Providing exposure to tech-focused roles to women through a lateral move, job-share or job-swap program is another way to spark new interest among those who may not have ever considered pursuing a job in technology. In fact, several Inovlta employees take advantage of mentorship opportunities throughout the organization to learn about various career paths, gather career advice and build a robust network of support.
3. Support Families and a Healthy Work-Life Balance
Another crucial piece of the women-in-tech puzzle is ensuring your organization provides benefits that support families and a healthy work-life balance. Offering paid parental leave, flexible start and finish times and the opportunity to work remotely can be major factors in a female candidate’s decision to take on a new role. It also instills confidence that they can grow their career at the organization without having to choose between family and career.
Involta offers numerous benefits to employees that include healthcare, life insurance, share options, paid parental leave and paid volunteer time. We pay a great deal of attention to creating a positive and conducive work environment that includes flexible schedules, allowing for better work-life balance and improved employee engagement and satisfaction.
4. Engage With the Community and Encourage STEM Fields
Actively engaging with the community can go a long way to help empower women and girls to pursue careers in STEM. There are dozens of opportunities to support your greater tech community and those exploring careers in the tech field. Ways to get involved include actively participating in women-focused conferences and associations that support gender diversity, amplifying your message on social media platforms and attending tech-focused networking events. Volunteering at local schools and children’s organizations is another way to inspire young women to consider a career in technology.
For example, Involta participates in several women-focused events and programs throughout the year, including the Girls, Inc. Full STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics) Ahead program, a series of virtual events highlighting women leaders in STEAM fields. In addition, every year, Involta co-hosts the ITG (Idaho Tech Gems) Charity Golf Classic benefiting Idaho Women in Technology (iWIT). This year, the event raised over $20,000 to help drive talent equity and support women in technology.
5. The Ultimate Goal: Recognize and Celebrate Women
Finally, it is crucial to celebrate the successes and key achievements of the women within your company. Involta has enjoyed much success thanks to its fearless women leaders, and we celebrate the work they do to drive innovation forward and inspire more females to take on tech roles within the company.
For instance, we are currently celebrating our very own Michelle Moran, Senior Vice President of Sales, Product and Marketing, who is passionate about elevating women’s voices within the technology community, mentoring several Involta employees and participating in multiple efforts to help drive educational initiatives to encourage careers in IT. Michelle was recently featured as Women of the Channel’s Woman of the Week where she shares unique insights related to her vibrant career and what led her to become a trailblazer at not only Involta, but across the entire technology industry. Check out the interview here. Way to go, Michelle!
In the tech world, new advancements and amazing breakthroughs are happening every day, proving that what we had thought at one time was impossible, is now a reality. As we look toward the future, the opportunity to drive real change and achieve even more incredible things is vast, and with more women leading the way in this exciting field, anything is possible.
Interested in a career at Involta? Visit our Careers page to learn more about joining our award-winning team.