Detlef Spang, CEO, Colt Data Centre Services talks us through her thoughts on International Women's Day, in terms of how far we have come and what still needs to be done.
Today marks International Women’s Day – a day to celebrate gender diversity in the workplace.
There is no doubt that women are just as talented and skilled as their male counterparts, yet not enough are stepping forward to take on tech roles – a situation we see all too often in the data centre industry.
What’s clear is that all businesses within the tech sector are missing a trick if they aren’t encouraging girls into tech. There is an undeniable overlap between the gender gap and the skills gap that plagues a vast majority of tech companies. Simply put, the more women that are not taking a share of the pie as the number of technology-oriented roles increase, the less skilled employees companies can tap into to help plug the gap.
A key reason for this is the lack of role models and encouragement for females from a young age as they progress through school years to hone the right skills needed to help tackle the skills gap. The lack of awareness of the vast range of career opportunities within the tech sector and the numerous barriers preventing them from pursuing technology is something that must be tackled, and it needs to be done now.
For us, the data centre industry is thriving, and we need new talent who can bring a variety of skills, experiences and background to support our business growth. The industry can no longer afford to wait for change without directly contributing to the cause.
The onus falls not only on tech companies, but also on educators and parents to motivate young girls to consider pursuing career paths in technology. Rethinking program structures, entry requirements and the way specific subjects are taught at school will be key to resolving the gender split in subjects such as computer science and engineering. This is evident in the results achieved in recent years as leading academic institutes that have completely restructured their program are experiencing a record number of female students.
Apprenticeships can also help ease the gender gap. Structuring programmes in a way that motivates both genders alike to consider apprenticeships in tech careers will be key to resolving the gender split in these industries and today, we have clear directions on how to do so.
But the largest barrier to getting more women into STEM careers is down to the lack of information of what working in the sector entails, as well as the opportunity and encouragement for these individuals to thrive.
PwC’s Tech She Can initiative is one of many initiatives aimed at supporting young girls and supporting the education system, and Colt DCS is proud to be a part of it, as well as run our own Girls in Tech events to guide girls on opportunities and provide successful real life stories from inspirational women who shaped their career paths in tech.
Plugging the gap through diversity will be the way forward for the tech industry.