• Meet the women rocking the tech world on International Women’s Day

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    QA, the UK’s leading technology training and apprenticeship organisation, has created a film to inspire women into technology careers for International Women’s Day.

    Last week, QA uncovered that nearly half of women were actively discouraged from starting a career in tech. This worrying revelation is highly conceivable, shown by the fact that women represent just 17% of all technology roles within the UK.

    This figure has remained flat during the past few years and shows that there are not any significant improvements on the gender imbalance within the fastest growing sector. If the influencers are dissuading young women from a tech career, this gender disparity will only continue without action being taken, says QA.

    QA’s research showed that in order to improve the ratio of women in tech, those surveyed recommended that the industry needs more role models (80%), more tech career education in schools (79%) and more help from the industry (65%) and government (36%), with others asking the TV and film industry to portray gender equality in technology.

    Bill Walker, CTO at QA said: “It is shocking that a huge percentage of women were actively discouraged from starting a tech career by people that they trust. Luckily, these ones made it through into the industry, but there will be many who haven’t and are missing out. It makes sense that more than 40% of women in tech roles started a career in a different field, having been discouraged by those close to them. With the sector growing, and with women representing just 17% of all IT roles, unless action is taken to change the perceptions of technology, improvements in gender disparity won’t be made. Of the women in our sample 76% didn’t see technology as an attractive career path at school, but almost 100% of them have enjoyed an exciting career in tech, with the best aspects being always learning more, working on tech that helps people’s lives, it’s exciting, good salary and flexible. Girls, women and their influencers need to know this in order to advise them appropriately.”

    In QA’s subtle film, which features women from across the technology industry, it sets out to dispel the myth that technology jobs are just for men. QA hopes that it inspires women to come forward for the incredible technology career development programmes and job opportunities that are available to both men and women across the UK, no matter what their level of technology experience is.

    The iconic Dame Stephanie Shirley also provides her view on what women bring to technology roles, having set-up the world’s first all-female software company in the 1960s.

    Dame Stephanie Shirley, Steve says: “It is so much easier for women now to get into technology careers given the opportunities available to them, such as apprenticeships, traineeships, intensive training programmes offered by the industry, and many other schemes and initiatives. Women need to know that they are just as suited to technology jobs as men. My ultimate wish for the industry is that it eventually becomes gender free and we hope QA’s video encourages women to see that technology is for anybody who is passionate about the potential of technology.”

    Watch QA’s full video for International Women’s Day HERE.


    Molly Dyson

    Editor – PA Life

    All stories by: Molly Dyson