Women in technology are becoming a more prominent force and reshaping the industry. Every element of the IT industry is seeing an increase in female participation, from coding to company leadership. Our world is becoming more and more dependent on technology, and businesses are beginning to understand that to succeed they need a diverse workforce. Women are acclaimed on a global scale because of their distinctive perspectives.
With our Women in Tech series, we want to shine a spotlight on some exemplary women from the Systems Plus family who’ve been leading the way in driving change.
1. Did you always know that working in technology was what you wanted to do? How did you decide to get into the technology sector?
No, This is not something that I had thoughtfully decided. I got an opportunity to work in this sector. The reason I was interested in pursuing it was that I was getting broader exposure in terms of wide working areas and the opportunity to work with international clients.
2. Do you notice a lack of women in technology? If so, why do you think that’s the case?
In my opinion, traditionally, the majority of women’s priority has been to strike a balance between managing their home/family and work. So preference has been towards liberal arts, teaching, Banking, etc i.e., areas that have fixed working hours or part-time sort of opportunities. Whereas in the Technology sector, the work is so unique that working hours may not be fixed and may require stretching extreme hours at times or if it’s an international project they may need to work in night shift or overlapping time zones, which may not be preferred considering the odd working hours. At times, there are hidden biases as well which leads to less hiring of female resources.
However, I see this perception changing in recent years. Women have been very competitive and consider working in all sectors. Also, the working hour flexibility and the freedom to work from any location has been the biggest advantage of this sector.
3. What do you think is the best part of being a woman in the tech industry?
Women are blessed with emotional intelligence, and the ability to think creatively and multitask. They have the ability to adapt quickly to change. The technology industry is very dynamic. There’s tons of innovation happening every minute and the environment is changing very fast. With the natural ability to cope up with change quickly and being able to act upon it, I think women can do wonders in this area.
4. How can we get more women into technology?
Balancing Family and work is still something that is a priority for every woman irrespective of nationality. Sometimes they also have to take a break mid-career after getting married or having a child. At times while hiring, the Job description is designed in such a way that shows a preference for a male candidate which ends up having more men. These hidden biases should be eliminated.
So when companies say they are investing in their employees, if they can take into consideration this situation of a women employee and accordingly design the support system, I think we will be able to attract more female talents. Women with a strong support network in an organization tend to commit to the organization for a longer time.
More than recruiting females, inclusion is important. Having females in the leadership team will encourage other female employees to step up and be motivated. So constant mentoring, encouragement and inclusion are important.
5. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in the tech industry? What do you wish you had known?
Keep up with the changing and latest trends in the market. Know your gaps and do some certifications to keep up with the competition. Network with industry experts and people who have been in this industry for many years can be a great way of learning as they can be a wonderful source of mentoring. The women population in the industry is still less and people may doubt your capabilities, never be afraid of that judgment. Take criticism positively and work towards improvement.
There are still many areas in India where opportunities in the technology industry don’t exist. I grew up in a place where the opportunity mainly lay in public services so I got introduced to this sector at a very later stage. I wish I had the awareness earlier in my life, so I could have known about all industries- pros and cons and would have decided on which industry to focus on at a very early stage.