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Gender gap narrows in tech sectors across UK, EU & US
Tue, 5th Mar 2024

The gender gap in tech sectors has shown significant narrowing trends in the UK, European Union (EU) and the United States (US) over the past four years, according to the recent Financial Times report. It highlighted that the share of women employed in tech roles, which include computer programming and related services, has shown steady progress.

In the UK, the shift is implicit as the percentage of women deployed in computer-related roles has escalated from 29% in 2019 to over 32% last year. In tandem, the overall female representation witnessed an increase from 30.9% to 34.1% in the same timespan. Further analysis brought to light that in the EU, the proportion of women engaged in tech roles surged from 23% to 25% at the end of 2023.

Attribution for this growth was largely directed towards increased availability of tech roles in European banks and consumer goods companies as per the Financial Times report. Meanwhile, data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics also signalled growth - the proportion of female tech workers in America climbed from 31% in 2019 to 33% by the end of 2023. Last year, the industry boasted 900,000 female workers in computer programming and related services out of a total 2.5 million workers.

Reflecting on these numbers, Sai Bendi, Software Development Manager at Encompass Corporation, underscored the need for continued progress. “The transformative power of technology makes it an enticing and exciting sector for women to be involved in. However, while the latest findings highlight progress, there’s still work to be done to ensure that diversity is a fundamental aspect of organisational culture and decision-making processes throughout the industry," he emphasised.

Bendi further highlighted the appeal of flexible working practices offered by many organisations, saying that they "are key to women being able to achieve a positive work-life balance that allows them to meet family and caring responsibilities, for example, while also thriving professionally. These evolving practices also underscore the industry’s adaptability to changing lifestyles today."

He advocated towards continued advocacy, accountability, and collaboration from all sides and stressed on the need to increase commitment and action to drive greater representation and, ultimately, equality in the tech industry, saying, "From implementing diversity and inclusion-focused initiatives to addressing bias in recruitment and promotion practices, there is a rising awareness of the need to generate significant change and foster a more diverse and inclusive industry for the future."

Chief Operating Officer for FDM Group, Sheila Flavell CBE, also commented on the persistent gender gap in tech though she recognised the positive movements spearheaded by tech firms in the advanced economies through gender equality policies and greater flexibility in the workplace. She noted how the rise of "work-from-anywhere and flexible hours" since the pandemic has shifted employee expectations and opened the doors of tech for many individuals. "Businesses must capitalise on this, encouraging more women into tech roles and equipping them with digital skills training to empower them to lead the development and adoption of fast-growing technologies such as artificial intelligence," she suggested.