The Ministry of Business and Employment (MBIE) and the Ministry for Women today launched a pilot to attract more women back into the technology sector.
Based in Wellington, Return to IT assists women with a digital technology backgrounds to return to work in the sector after taking a career break of between two and five years. Successful applicants will be offered an opportunity to be placed with a participating organisation, or assistance with seeking employment in the IT sector.
I recently joined the NZTech Women High Impact Team, with the honour of being the group’s first male representative. This has significantly improved the teams gender diversity to a proportion not far off the percentage of women in tech in New Zealand businesses!
This morning on TVNZ’s Breakfast show, NZTech’s Andrea Hancox discussed busting tech stereotypes. Watch the interview here.
New Zealand is not alone in attracting and retaining women in tech, a leading tech specialist says.
Andrea Hancox, NZTech’s national director of government relations, says the whole world faces the issue of attracting and retaining women in tech and introducing tech to young women as a choice of career.
The Ministry of Women has released a guide Decoding Diversity targeted at attracting and retaining girls and women in tech education. The guide is for secondary school teachers, university lecturers, code club volunteers and other community group leaders, potential employers, career advisors, industry professionals, recruitment personnel, students and parents.
‘Women in tech’ is unfortunately not a phrase heard often enough. We are all aware of the gender divide between men and women in IT, but instead of asking ‘how can we fix it?’ we tend to get stuck in the negative mindset of the ‘that’s just the way it is’. If you are working in the New Zealand tech sector, there is an opportunity to help change the future of women in the industry, through an inspirational initiative from NZTech, ShadowTech Day.
New Zealand needs more research on why younger generations of women are not considering a career in Tech and why we see a high dropout of women dropout of the workforce, a NZTech leader says.
Eva Sherwood is an Account Executive at Oracle New Zealand, and serves on the Board of NZTech as a representative for major corporates. She began her career in I.T. in 2007, after studying degrees in Psychology and Business, then completing a post-grad diploma in Software Testing. Eva’s passionate about encouraging more young women to consider careers in the tech sector. She first became a ShadowTech Day mentor in 2016. Here, she shares a few of her experiences so far:
Efforts to encourage women into software programming and other parts of the tech industry are going up a notch.
Industry body NZTech is doubling the size of its ShadowTech Days mentoring programming, which will this year pair 500 high school girls with women already in the industry, after receiving funding from the Ministry of Youth Development.
Over the last couple of years, you may have noticed an increased dialogue and attentiveness in the media around the lack of diversity in tech, mainly the gender gap. However, the discussion hasn’t translated into results and data is showing a widening gender gap across the industry. Despite this, we are seeing an increased commitment for diversity in tech from several organisations, but we need more. NZTech Women is helping lead the charge and I’m proudly part of this inspiring group. As Eva Sherwood recently highlighted, we have come together from all facets of the tech sector to make a real impact through several key initiatives.