We know that social and financial factors impact and often stop women from pursing STEM careers – including lack of mentors and role models; gender bias and derogatory behavior; unequal growth opportunities and lesser wage for same position as male counterparts. This brief provides an overview of why focusing on women in tech is a passionate focus for WBC.
Why focus on women in tech?
Women in the technology industry encounter more gender inequality than in any other workforce population.
- Computing roles for women in tech have been on a decline over the past 25 years (Pew Research)
- In 2015, 25% of all leadership positions in technology were held by women (Source: Statista)
- In 2015, only 11% of all executive positions in Silicon Valley were held by women (Source: Business Insider)
- White women hold 16% of computing roles and women of color hold less than 10% (NCWIT)
- The quit rate of women in technology is almost twice as high as that of men. (Source: NCWIT)
- In 2018, the number of women who left their STEM jobs was 53%. In comparison, that number for men was 31%
- The female quit rate is even higher in the technology sector, compared to science and engineering; 56% of women quit their technology jobs in 2016
- In 2018 women were 3.5 times more likely to be 35+ and still in a junior tech position (The Next Web)
- According to researchers, men are far less likely to stay at junior level roles for long:
- 30% of women over the age of 35 are still in junior positions; while less than 5% of men who are 35 or older are still in junior positions
- Less than 50% of women between 25 – 34 are Senior Developers; while more than 85% of men between 25 – 34 are Senior Developers
- Only 17% of all Fortune 500 CIO positions are held by women. (Source: NCWIT)
So what can we do? We’ve partnered with an incredible group of organizations to drive change: Hispanic IT Executive Council (HITECH); Information Technology Senior Management Forum (ITSMF); The WIT Network; Watermark.
Together we plan to pilot a program that will be focused on providing women in tech with a path to C-suite positions, conduct research to establish our baseline and the possibilities, work towards expanding the program across the country, and more.
We believe that through these actions we can see:
- Female quit rate in the technology sector down by 50% by 2030
- Women constitute 35% of all leadership positions by 2025 of which 15% are women of color
- Increase the representation of women in C-Suite technology positions (CIO, CTO, CISO, CDO) by 3% by 2025 of which 4% are women of color