Empowering Women in Technology
In the dynamic world of technology, it’s crucial to address the challenges faced by women in their pursuit of successful careers. The 2023 Women’s Ambition Report, a treasure trove of insights by the Women’s Agenda, sheds light on this crucial issue. I want to focus on strategies that will empower women to rise above the barrier presenteeism represents.
- 42 per cent of Australian women engage in hybrid or remote work
- 37 per cent say their lack of visibility to management is hindering their career
- 16 per cent suggest it’s affecting their chances of promotion
So, what can companies actually do about it?
- Establish a (genuine) culture of flexibility and empathy:
The Women’s Ambition Report sheds light on the fact that women in technology often face hurdles due to presenteeism, leading to attendance disparities that adversely affect their chances of promotion. That means companies have to embrace flexibility wholeheartedly (not just talk about it) by doing the actual work to embed flex and making sure that a) everyone is encouraged and supported to work flexibly not just women and b) women are able to thrive in their technology careers regardless of their physical presence in the office.
- Support (all) employees with caring responsibilities:
Let’s address the elephant in the room! The report strongly emphasises the need for companies to provide unwavering support to employees juggling caregiving responsibilities. Offering childcare support, flexible work hours, and paid leave for family emergencies can alleviate the challenges faced predominantly by women.
- Invest in professional development:
To bridge the gender gap in technology, organisations must invest in the professional development of women. This can be achieved through mentorship programs, specialised training, and leadership opportunities. By empowering women with the necessary skills and guidance, you will create a robust pipeline of talented technologists.
- Foster (genuinely) inclusive work environments:
The Women’s Ambition Report emphasises the importance of inclusive work environments in technology. It may seem obvious to some but this work has to go beyond employer branding! Only by intentionally cultivating a culture that values diversity, provides a level playing field for everyone, and encourages women’s voices to be heard, can companies harness the full potential of their women working in technology.
- Set clear expectations for productivity and performance:
In an era where workspaces transcend traditional boundaries, it’s imperative to establish crystal-clear expectations for all employees, irrespective of their physical location. The Women’s Ambition Report underlines the significance of transparent guidelines for productivity and performance, helping to level the playing field for women to be recognised for their work, whether working remotely or in the office.
In addition to these game-changing strategies, the report sheds light on other impactful steps that companies can take to support women’s advancement in technology:
- Advocate for Equal Representation:
Promoting equal representation of women in leadership positions and decision-making roles is crucial for the advancement of women in technology.
- Mentoring and Sponsorship:
Creating networks and communities that connect women in technology can provide a badly needed support system and strengthen professional growth. Mentoring programs, industry associations, and women in tech initiatives play a vital role in offering guidance, inspiration, and opportunities for collaboration. The Women’s Ambition Report passionately advocates for these initiatives, recognising their pivotal role in women’s skill development and network expansion.
- Pay Equality:
The report boldly reminds us of the glaring importance of pay equity. Companies can focus on eliminating pay gaps and take steps towards a culture of fairness and transparency.
- Inclusion and Belonging:
Inclusivity isn’t just a buzzword; it’s the heart and soul of a thriving workplace. The Women’s Ambition Report highlights the transformative power of creating a culture where women feel welcomed and supported and we know that tech is often designed around the dominant archetype. My advice? Go big on this one! Our own research told us this is a top 3 priority for women working in technology workplaces.
By implementing these strategies and leveraging the insights from The 2023 Women’s Ambition Report, organisations can dismantle barriers, overcome presenteeism, and empower women to thrive in technology careers. And if you are not sure where to start, talk to us today or evaluating where your company stands with our Pulse Check.
Let’s champion gender equality, foster genuinely inclusive work environments, and unlock the immense potential of women in driving technological innovation.