Diversity in Tech 2018
By Felicity WinkleyJun 11th 2018
Last week, I was really pleased to attend the Diversity in Tech 2018 conference, which provided a great opportunity to think both about how to build more diverse workplace cultures, and in so doing how to help our organisations build more diverse products. At TotallyMoney, we’re committed to making our workplace inclusive. But, it’s important to recognise that while the intention is there, figuring out how to do it in practice can be more challenging. That’s probably why one of the opening pieces of advice from Elspeth at Makers Academy stuck with me. Instead of determinedly aiming to increase inclusivity, she says we should focus on reducing exclusivity. This means acknowledging our implicit biases and trying to counteract them, reviewing our hiring processes and ensuring they’re flexible and accommodate a wide range of candidates, and that our cultural practices don’t rule some people out. While diversity takes many forms one area we’ve been reviewing at TotallyMoney is how to improve our gender balance and create an environment that champions female staff. To this end, we were proud to be among the latest cohort of announced signatories of the Women in Finance Charter, a commitment by HM Treasury and signatory firms to improve the ‘progression of women into senior roles in the financial services sector’. Although not required to do so, we also recently reviewed our Gender Pay Gap to help us identify what work we need to do. In particular, we’re keen to bring in more female staff to our development team (although we’re thrilled that our gender split here is generally seen to be quite favourable in comparison to other businesses!). However, despite making concerted efforts to reach female candidates — using platforms such as CodeFirst:Girls and Ada’s List — the problem is that there simply aren’t enough women coders out there. This is supported by the finding that of almost 65,000 respondents to the Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2018, only 6.9% were female — not far from the 10% of women who account for Stacks Overflow’s US traffic. That’s just one of the reasons we’re thrilled to have signed PwC’s Tech She Can charter, to work towards encouraging more school-age girls to consider Technology as a career and therefore improve the pipeline of female developers in generations to come. Having attended the first signatories workshop on 2nd June (and enjoyed some great conversations and cupcakes), we’ve committed to support the Role Models workstream: to show the coding girls of tomorrow what’s possible with tech!