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Getting gender equality in technology firms right

Rebecca Taylor , 03 Jul 2015

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The technology industry has seen an employment boom over the last 10 years. While startups have become multi-million pound corporations, keeping a balanced, equal culture is essential. It’s easy for companies to make simple mistakes with enormous fallout.

ResponseTap grows more every day. We recently opened our new office in Atlanta with more to follow around the globe. We’re proud of our achievements around gender equality, but we’ve learned a few things along the way. Here are our top tips for getting the gender balance just right: 

Work matters and so does life. Flexible working and remote working initiatives have been born out of the desire for a better work/life balance. Women face harder choices between professional success and personal fulfillment. It’s crucial to remember that people have lives outside work – providing individuals with an opportunity to balance and manage their own time, where they work and occasionally when they work helps to attract the brightest talent rather than only those who can conform to your company's structure.

Discover potential. Engage potential employees at apprenticeship and graduate level. New hires might not be the most experienced, but they have incredible potential to be the CEO of tomorrow. Remember to be in the right place at the right time to meet the next top people for your organisation. Culture is always defined by those at the top, if new grads see that their talent, skills and passion are encouraged in a company that has seen success, they’ll be driven to become incredible employees.

Fight for a good cause. Focusing philanthropic efforts, funding or sponsorship towards an equal rights not-for profit enables your business to absorb an external perspective of gender equality around the world. Once your workforce appreciates the complexities of other cultures, their minds open and organisational culture is directly impacted for the better.

Nurture young talent. A good education in tech starts at a young age. At the centre of tech is coding – initiatives like ‘hour of code’ enable people of all ages to learn about this discipline. Take it a step further and open an after-school code club for kids, encourage young women to join and open their minds to possibilities of the future. 

We’re always seeking new ways to ensure gender equality, but in the meantime we know it’s up to us as women to make our voices heard. Equality starts with self-efficacy, knowing that you have the power to learn and master any art – young or old. In the next few years we want to see more women on boards, but most importantly we want to see education becoming attractive for both genders, which will lead to a more equal skill set in workplaces. 

Equality starts in one place, with you.

Rebecca Taylor is global head of HR at ResponseTap, a call tracking and web analytics software company

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In this issue: June 2015
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