The IT sector has long been affected by serious personnel shortage. Hence it is required that potential of the entire population is taken in use. The road to technology industry frequently starts with choices made in education, but worldwide women still don’t seem to make this choice very often – among those who choose science, technology, mathematics, or engineering, only approximately 30% are women.
In addition to solving the issue of the shortage of competent applicants, it is important to introduce a female perspective to the development of technology. In future, various algorithms will govern our lives and choices to an increasing degree, and it is by no means a matter of indifference who is responsible for creating them. If different perspectives are not noted in the software development, we risk introducing harmful biases to IT solutions as well. At the same time, it is clear that diversified teams increase the number of different perspectives that can drive innovation, which in turn has a direct influence on the success of any company.
Often, the first spark and interest in technology is kindled in childhood. It is evident that we need different parts of society to join in shaping the perception of the IT sector; and tech companies have a central role in this. We must display exemplary role models and show more female leaders who can speak authoritatively on the importance of their work.
Supporting diversity and equality is one of our core values. This is something we strive for actively and which has brought us international recognition from, for instance, Bloomberg and the SHE-Index. However, we still have a long way to go. Today, 29% of our employees globally are women, and we are not satisfied with this number. We believe an improvement can only be achieved through determination and concrete actions. Last week, we published our ambitious goals for diversity and inclusion: we aim to increase the number of women to 40% of our personnel by 2026 and to 50% by 2030.
Reaching this goal won’t be easy, but we will work hard for it. We will be continuously monitoring progress, we will scrutinise our recruitment practises and make certain that both female and male candidates are always considered as final candidates for leadership positions. We will extend personnel training to build awareness on unconscious bias and we will also increase the number of development programmes and mentoring for women leaders. As one of the biggest Nordic IT employers, we believe we have an opportunity to make a genuine change in the industry.
I extend a warm welcome to all women who wish to join the technology industry.
TietoEVRY, Managing Partner, Finland