Women in Tech
Today in the technology sector, companies struggle with obtaining and retaining female talent. In our industry, organizations like Women of FileMaker (now known as Women Innovating Together) challenge that notion by providing valuable support and resources to help give a stronger voice to a valuable group of people who not only stand to benefit the entire industry but the individuals that operate within it.
Despite women making up more than half of the US workforce, they only account for less than 20% of US tech-related jobs. In 2019 however, there are more and more instances of initiatives and organizations working to break down barriers between women and technology. In addition to FileMaker, big names like Intuit and Salesforce are making moves to attract and retain more female talent, and studies are being conducted to identify what factors are influencing this gender gap within the technology industry.
“Even relatively basic job advertisements like: “seeking an individual to manage a team” limits you to a more male-dominated applicant pool”
The Financial Times has a fascinating article on what the tech industry can, and is doing to attract more female applicants. For example, one organization has found that by simply re-orienting their job advertisements, they were able to increase female applications by 7% during a short 3-month trial period. Other tactics include eliminating gender from application forms and reducing jargon on job-related ads. Research has shown that even relatively basic job advertisements like: “seeking an individual to manage a team” limits you to a more male-dominated applicant pool, as a study of millions of job advertisements found the word “manage” results in fewer female applicants.
Over the course of 2 years, Australian tech-giant: Atlassian, experienced an 80% increase in women applicants for tech roles by implementing a smart text-writing software for their job-post copy that helped better optimize their ads to be more inclusive. Atlassian is a great example of the impact simple changes can have in making the tech industry a more inclusive space. Just by leveraging the power of words and synonyms, a job ad can be made to be inclusive, or exclusive. Some more ways organizations can foster a diverse applicant pool are:
- Mentioning inclusive benefits such as maternity/parental leave
- Emphasizing you strive towards diversity & inclusion
- Avoiding corporate jargon where possible
- Excluding gender-oriented words in the job description (like “manage” vs. “lead”)
By making small, manageable changes, the technology industry can begin to shatter glass ceilings and foster an environment where everybody feels welcome and able to contribute. Seek out and support organizations like Women of FileMaker and become versed on the stats regarding women in tech by staying up to date with reports like those provided by the National Center for Women & Information Technology, and Honeypot.
If you or someone you know is working to strengthen their FileMaker skills be sure to check out our online training packages for users ranging from basic to intermediate levels of experience.