The future of women in technology – how we can ‘break the bias’

Article by Linda Dotts, Chief Partner Strategy Officer, SS&C Blue Prism

Women are often the unsung heroes of many businesses, but too often they are undervalued and underrepresented across the tech industry.

This year’s International Women’s Day theme focused on ‘breaking the bias’, referring to the gender-based biases, stereotypes and discriminatory behaviors women encounter in their everyday lives.

Breaking the bias means working towards a world where women are valued and their success is recognised. Today, women in the UK represent only one in six tech specialists and one in ten IT leaders. These statistics are a poor reflection of female capability and potential. Although there has been recent growth in the number of women working in IT roles, overall female representation in the technology sector has halted over the last ten years. Meanwhile, Deloitte’s latest Global Women in the Boardroom shows that only just under a fifth of board seats are female. The number of women in FTSE 100 boardroom roles has increased by 39% over the last 10 years, indicating a slow rise in female presence, but concerns remain around these figures hiding an ongoing lack of diversity.

The term ‘women in tech’ is a closed, rather than open, door; it suggests a woman with complex digital skills suited for the role – when in reality, this expertise can be learned on the job. The stereotype of a woman in tech is generally a highly-skilled coder or someone at the bottom of the working hierarchy, in an entry-level role. This bias persists in part because of men in leadership positions being comfortable with the status quo and their ignorance to the issue, but the reality is that unless we push through that, nothing will change.

It’s time to break down stereotypes

The intelligent automation (IA) market is rapidly growing. 67% of companies accelerated their automation and AI capabilities in response to the pandemic and this trend is projected to continue. We already know that IA is about processes and improving efficiency, which is a human skill –  a skill that I believe is a natural talent to women. So why are these skills not recognised as valuable in the workplace?

Put simply, the industry challenge is not due to a lack of skills – but rather to inherent misconceptions and a perceived lack of access for women trying to break into the tech space.

Automation has enabled many women to bring their talents to life. It’s allowed women to flourish and make their vision a reality by connecting them with the tools they need to get there. Automation is about transforming the way we all work to accelerate operational efficiency and agility – which allows everyone, including women, to take control and work smarter. Working smarter frees up employees from mundane tasks, enabling them to prioritise decision-making tasks that require concentration.

While there have been great improvements with getting women into tech leadership roles, we still face serious challenges of stereotypes and discrimination when it comes to breaking the bias. While McKinsey’s Women in the Workplace Report revealed that 73% of women experience bias at work, only 22% of employees say they’ve witnessed such bias in the workplace. Women are often not heard in the same capacity as their male counterparts or are blamed for not speaking up enough. Clearly, there is a lot of work to be done – and businesses must go further to make sure women feel supported in all aspects of their careers.

An organisation can have all the right policies and programs in place, and that’s a great step in the right direction, but the more important and challenging hurdle is changing the culture of a workplace to support the success of women. All employees at every level should be contributing to breaking the bias. We should all embrace the power of efficiency in the workplace and simultaneously elevate women, who are just as worthy and capable of boardroom positions as men. And by harnessing the power of RPA across a company so that all employees, including women, can engage in more fulfilling and value-adding tasks, we can genuinely start to break the bias.


bias corporates, International Women's Day, #breakthebias

3 ways to break the bias for women in tech

bias corporates, International Women's Day, #breakthebias

By Jody Robie, SVP of North America, Talent Works

Although there’s been a focus on attracting women to tech roles, according to our new research, the working environments in many organisations are toxic and women aren’t confident that enough is being done to support them.

Did you know that 77% of women have experienced a toxic work culture in the tech industry within the last five years? Our study, which surveyed women in technology on their experiences on recruitment and employment in the UK, found that 21% cited it to be a frequent experience in their career.

Tackling diversity issues should be top on the agenda for tech companies all year round, not just on International Women’s Day or during Women’s History Month. With this in mind, this article will look at three ways tech businesses can show their commitment to calling out bias, unravelling stereotypes and fixing inequality in the technology working landscape.

Fix the gender pay gap to make women feel more supported

According to the Office of National Statistics, in 2021, more women than men in the UK were furloughed with a loss of pay. Beyond this, the gender pay gap reported to the government by Britain’s biggest firms is widening, according to analysis by The Guardian.

Three years after a new law compelled companies to reveal the difference between male and female wages, data shows that eight out of 10 organisations with more than 250 staff still have a gender pay gap. The most recent set of government data shows women are being paid a median hourly rate 10.2% less than their male colleagues.

It’s not just mid to large enterprises with the problem. According to Sifted, in 2021, more than half of UK scaleups had a gender pay gap worse than the national average in 2020. Twelve out of 20 reporting companies fell below the average UK pay gap of 15.5% for full and part-time employees — meaning women are paid 84.5p for every £1 men earn — some significantly.

There are many starting points to solving the gender pay gap, and thankfully many of them are simple. Companies need to be transparent about salaries, and need to commit to paying women equally. Training and advancement opportunities also need to be made intentionally equal, and companies need to be looking to promote women actively at the same rate as men.

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Ensuring women are in tech leadership roles

It’s important to look at the gender pay gap critically however. In the UK, it is illegal to pay women less for the same job. The gender pay gap points to the amount of women (or lack thereof) in senior and higher-paid positions.

In our survey, seeing a positive and recognisable example of inclusion at a prospective company was important for 65% of respondents, while 73% said they would be more likely to join a tech firm that had female leadership.

Supporting women in technology needs to be an ongoing and intentional effort. It needs to start at the top, and include a clear commitment to ensure women’s success consistently at all levels of your organisation.

Companies may be getting better at recruiting female talent, but there is still quite a bit of work to do to ensure the employee experience and road to success is an equal commitment.

The application process also has a considerable impact on whether women in technology apply for a role, with 65% of respondents being confident that they can spot a toxic work environment during the application process. 52% of women also feel that companies create gendered job adverts (for example, using masculine and feminine words).

Create and promote a healthy working culture for women

On top of the toxic working environment findings from our survey, a fifth of respondents stated that little or no progress has been made over the past five years to attract women into tech.

Companies all need to do their part in actively encouraging women into the tech sector and creating conditions for them to thrive. This is critical, especially against the context of the UK skills shortage, where we need that talent in the tech industry.

If a female comes into an organisation that is 90% male and that office environment doesn’t make her feel included, chances are she’ll take a job elsewhere, where she feels more welcome and comfortable.

It all starts with differentiating through hiring strategies that support diversity and inclusion. We need to be creating job descriptions that appeal to females. In our experience, female candidates often won’t apply unless they feel they meet 90-100% of the criteria, whereas studies have shown that male candidates may not be so concerned and may apply regardless. Companies should be working to ensure their criteria isn’t alienating women.

Creating core values that are reflective of diversity and which are continually communicated to existing employees will encourage unity within the business. It will also ensure that the candidates entering your organisation are the best fit for your culture.

Jody RobieAbout the author

Jody Robie has been running disruptive recruitment provider Talent Works in North America for eight years. Talent Works offers an intelligent and agile approach to hiring talent through flexible Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO).

Jody is helping scaling companies to source great talent and build standout employer brands. She is dedicated to changing the recruitment conversation, challenging conventional thinking and propelling organizations to new heights in the race to deliver the best talent. She helps clients leverage Talent Works’ team of brand and insight specialists, creative marketers and global recruiters to help companies source the talent they need to scale.

Meet our 100 incredible leaders breaking the bias & calling for societal change this International Women’s Day

As part of our #WeAreBreakingTheBias campaign, we will be sharing the thoughts of over 100 leaders who are calling for societal change for women. We hope you will join us so we can amplify why we should all #BreakTheBias for gender equity.

VIEW OUR 100 INSPIRING LEADERS

A group of miniature men and women standing on either side of a pile of coins, equal pay, gender pay gap

International Women’s Day 2022: Overcoming unconscious bias for a more equal future

International Women’s Day has been raising awareness and striving for gender equality for 111 years.

Whilst much has been achieved in this time, Shirley Knowles, Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer at Progress, reminds us why such a day is still so important in 2022: “International Women’s Day is meant to celebrate women and recognize their achievements. For too long, women have been left out of the history books and decision-making conversations, and that is especially true for the STEM fields. Names like Rosalind Franklin, Katherine Johnson and Mae C. Jemison should be just as recognisable as Steve Jobs. Women’s contributions to the STEM fields should be acknowledged and praised, and we need to continue this momentum for all girls and women pursuing these fields. And how do we do that? By investing in them.”

With this in mind, WeAreTechWomen spoke to industry experts to determine why there is still such a gender gap in society, and the technology industry in particular, and what organisations can be doing to close the gap and support their female employees.

Institutional bias from a young age

One of the main barriers preventing women from entering the technology industry is the pre-existing gender bias that makes the sector so male-dominated.

“The biggest barriers in technology for women are what we believe they can accomplish, and attitudes surrounding that on an educational level,” explains Lucy Zhang, Senior Digital Designer at Plutora. “Most people can agree that the idea that women are better suited for certain types of work is outdated, but this notion still permeates society and is difficult to tackle head-on.”

“Of course, the lack of diversity in tech is not a problem solely facilitated by the employment sector, for many, the issues begin far before entering the workforce,” adds Caroline Seymour, VP of Product Marketing at Zerto, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company. “Young girls face notable obstacles from very early on in their schooling, whether that is unconscious bias, or being actively discouraged from STEM subjects. Therefore, by the time they are making career choices, many have not taken on higher STEM education and therefore do not have the necessary qualifications to enter the science and technology sectors as easily as their male counterparts.” 

Samantha Humphries, Head of Security Strategy EMEA at Exabeam agrees that “the biggest obstacles women face often start long before they enter formal employment. Young girls face conscious and unconscious bias throughout their entire schooling and as a result, often overlook or are actively discouraged from pursuing STEM subjects. But, is encouraging girls to participate in traditional STEM subjects the only way forward? I’m a big supporter of adding an ‘A’ for ‘Arts’ to the acronym. Creativity is needed across the board in tech roles, and often girls do levitate towards these kinds of subjects. If we did a better job of promoting the importance of creative thinking in technology, we could inspire more women and girls into the industry – both as they begin their careers, and to join the industry later in life too.”

Fight for fairness

With awareness of the institutional bias that is still so prominent within society, it is important that organisations fight against this and have initiatives in place to support women in tech. 

“We continue to champion the women in our business and celebrate their achievements around the world,” emphasises Dominique Fougerat – EVP People & Culture at Axway. “We can actively choose to challenge stereotypes, fight bias, broaden perceptions, improve situations, and celebrate women’s achievements. We support local education programs to contribute to start inclusion earlier in life than just at work. We are on an irresistible path to a different kind of society and tech must reflect this challenge to all businesses: We challenge all businesses to join the discussion and, if we pull together as an industry, we can improve as a sector and support the technology women of today and inspire those of tomorrow.”

In order to make these big societal changes, smaller steps are needed. Focusing on making recruitment and progression processes inclusive is an important first step for achieving these bigger aims.

“Recruitment, personal development, and promotion processes are key to building a work environment that fosters gender equality,” states Eulalia Flo, Sales Director, Iberia at Commvault. “We have to be careful that they don’t continue to perpetuate inequality. If I want to recruit more women and I know that there are not many female graduates in one career, it would be good to ask in which other careers I can find them (for example, there are more women in aeronautics than in mechanical engineering, or in biomedical engineering than in telecommunications).”

“Using language that is female inclusive and drawing out the benefits that would attract within HR sites and in job descriptions is also key,” adds Sharon Forder, SVP Marketing at Glasswall. “Practising what you preach by actively promoting females into leadership roles and helping them to become part of the ‘face of the company’ will contribute to breaking down the long standing perceptions of ‘it’s a male dominated sector’.” 

Furthermore, with domestic duties and childcare responsibilities falling on many women, it is important that organisations are mindful of this and don’t prioritise men without these burdens for promotions and other workplace advantages. The COVID-19 pandemic has been beneficial in this case by bringing about a greater appreciation for flexible working.

As Bruce Martin – CFO at Tax Systems explains: “Organisations need to open their businesses up to the large diverse talent pool that is too often overlooked – the part time workers, which statistically are more likely to be women. Challenging the traditional 9 to 5 / 5 days a week approach is one way to achieve this.

“At Tax Systems we have embraced agile working practices and worked hard throughout the company to encourage and support part time and flexible working before, during and now after the COVID pandemic. By being more accommodating and taking on the objective approach of trusting our team to get the work done, we are able to widen our talent pool and get the right people in the right roles – irrespective of location, time constraints or personal circumstance.”

A brighter future

Organisations are certainly becoming more aware of their role in closing the gender gap and diversity is now a topic of boardroom discussion in many businesses. As we continue to move in the right direction and push further for equality, International Women’s Day provides the perfect opportunity to “celebrate women all over the world who pushed forward in an effort to #BreakTheBias so others could thrive,” notes Julie Giannini, Chief Customer Officer at Egnyte. “While the journey is far from over – with women in leadership remaining underrepresented and gender biases still prevalent across many industries – we can take the time to celebrate the women who got us here, as well as those who keep pushing.”

Mariam Karamyan, Associate Software Development Manager at HelpSystems concludes: “This International Women’s Day I want to encourage organisations to focus on what more they can be doing to promote female role models and celebrate the women they currently have in leadership positions. At the end of the day, this will not only benefit women but the company as a whole. Men and women see things differently and bring unique ideas to the table. With true diversity of thought, we can achieve better problem solving and boost performance at the business unit level.”

Meet our 100 incredible leaders breaking the bias & calling for societal change this International Women’s Day

As part of our #WeAreBreakingTheBias campaign, we will be sharing the thoughts of over 100 leaders who are calling for societal change for women. We hope you will join us so we can amplify why we should all #BreakTheBias for gender equity.

VIEW OUR 100 INSPIRING LEADERS

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What does #breakthebias mean to leaders in STEM?

Diverse international and interracial group of standing women, women empowering women

Each year International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8, with the first day being held in 1911.

Thousands of events occur to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women. Organisations, governments, charities, educational institutions, women’s groups, corporations and the media celebrate the day.

This year’s theme is #BreakTheBias – which looks actively call out gender bias, discrimination and stereotyping each time you see it.

To mark International Women’s Day we spoke to Elena Rodriguez-Falcon, Chief Executive Officer and President of NMITE; Samantha Lewis, Director of HR, NMITE; and Gary Wood, Academic Director, NMITE about their thoughts on the day and #breakthebias.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

Elena Rodriguez-FalconElena: International Women’s Day is an important day when we remind ourselves of how far we’ve come in terms of gender equality and gender inclusion. It’s a moment to celebrate each other, to celebrate women’s achievements, to raise each other up. But unfortunately, it’s also a day when we must reflect on all the obstacles we still have to overcome, and the gaps that we still need to bridge. And if I were to be really, honest, I would prefer if we didn’t have an International Women’s Day, because that would mean that we achieved what we needed to achieve.

Do you feel there are barriers and biases within the engineering industry that prevent women from achieving their full potential? If so, what?

Elena: Yes, of course. There are always barriers and indeed for women in engineering profession, a prevalent bias is that women won’t be able to be committed the same way as men because of their caring responsibilities, which women still largely have. It’s also important though, to mention that we’ve come a long way since days where that was completely a fact. There are many things we’ve done to prevent that. But there is also a reality. There aren’t enough women in engineering. And, one of the reasons is because we, as women, have clear biases about the profession. We worry about whether we will be the only woman in the workforce, and often it’s true. I worry about the gender pay gap, and that is often true still, unfortunately. So, I think that the better question is, what can we do to break the bias and get more women into the profession?

Samantha LewisSamantha: I do. I spent 16 years in manufacturing. I think it’s still perceived by many as a man’s game. The perception is its oil, and rags, and spanners. And engineering isn’t just that. engineering is so much more. And I think if we can expose engineering in its entirety to more women, more women will be attracted to the trade, and that shift could then slowly happen. I think there’s a lot of people that still believe women should stay at home and raise the children, men go and do the engineering roles. And that isn’t the same anymore. Women, they’re curious, they have passion, they have grit, they have determination. And all of those are things that make a good engineer. They’re not traits that are just seen in men. So, the more we can expose females to what engineering really is, the more we can change that perception.

What more should be done to #BreakTheBias and encourage women to pursue STEM subjects as a profession?

Elena: This is one of the most important questions, but also the most difficult one. If you look around, we have serious problems in terms of poverty, climate change, we’re experiencing a worldwide pandemic and we need engineers, scientists, mathematicians to help us solve these problems and others. But the reality is that we don’t have enough engineers.

The number of women who graduate from engineering is such a small proportion and the number who practice engineering is even smaller. And professional engineering bodies like the Royal Academy of Engineering, have created massive campaigns and resources to educate the educators, train the parents, the careers advisors, and so on. And those are working to some extent. There is so much more that can be done though, and that’s the challenge. We still haven’t cracked it and the next step includes everyone being involved.

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What is NMITE doing to #BreakTheBias and encourage more women to study engineering? 

Elena: Our female engineers and colleagues are working on outreach activities, marketing, and student recruitment to ensure we are present and sharing what we have achieved and can achieve. We have looked at the barriers to entry to higher education. One of them is A-level math, for example, which we’ve removed, reducing the funneling that often happens. We’ve looked at investing heavily on female campaigns to ensure that young people out there and their parents can better understand the profession. Also, we have female only bursaries, which is very uncommon, and I think is incredibly important to celebrate. The most important and I think more transformational contribution that NMITE is making to gender balance and gender representation is our pedagogical model, in which we ensure that it’s hands on learning, problem based learning with different industries and sectors represented so that there is a variety of experiences that people out there could experience. Hopefully it will attract more diverse engineers and certainly more women.

Samantha: We are making ourselves known as a brand, where we’re working within the community. We don’t require maths or physics A levels. We look at characteristics and traits more than just subjects and grades. Grades are important, but so are what makes that individual and what makes them become an engineer.

So, the determination, grit, passion, that need to succeed, all those traits can be seen in both females and males. Hopefully, that will open the door to attract more females into engineering. We’re looking at ways we can attract females. We are hopefully going to have the women’s bursary or females bursaries to attract them.

We are working with schools and colleges. We’re hoping diversity breeds diversity. So the more females we can attract, that will attract more females. So our staff is 50/50 gender-balanced. Our student cohort aims to be 50/50 gender-balanced because we want people to feel comfortable. So it doesn’t matter who you are, what your background is, male or female; it doesn’t really matter. We want people to belong here across the whole board.

Are you personally doing anything to #BreakTheBias and champion equality, diversity and inclusion, both in general and within your role at NMITE?

Elena: Absolutely. This has been a lifelong ambition of mine to help and contribute to getting more women into engineering. I’m a member of the Advance HE Strategic Advisory Board on Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion. I chair the board of trustees of the Engineering Development Trust, which is an organization that works with young people to raise aspirations. I also often lead on national debates. For example, last year, I challenged the professional engineering bodies to change the name of the profession to call engineers “ingeniators”. And the rationale was that in other languages, the word ‘engineering’ comes from ingenuity and innovation. And of course, in English, it sounds as if it comes from an engine. And that caused a huge debate, which, of course, also makes engineering a bit more visible.

But more personally, I participate in talks with young people. I talk to peers and parents, and I’m often at the forefront of those conversations. And of course, leading NMITE is one of the most important activities that I can do personally, so that I can raise awareness of engineering and of the value of engineering in the world.

What advice/words of wisdom would you give to your younger self and to aspiring female engineers, to help overcome biases?

Elena: When I was at university and deciding what to study, I was considering medicine, but I discovered that I didn’t like blood. So, I decided to do something else, which would allow me to help people. So, what I would tell my young self is that engineering is a caring profession. It’s not often how people understand engineering, but without engineering, we wouldn’t have the tools that are used in practicing medicine or the tools to do nursing or the tools to make vaccines. And that is something that I would’ve liked someone to tell me.

What I would say to young people now, particularly this generation who are really worried about their future, is that if you want to be part of the change that you want to see, consider engineering, because then you will have a very important role to play to help save the world.

Gary WoodGary: I’d remind everybody that biases exist in the minds of people. And so, in that sense, they’re relatively easy for us to overcome, we just need change our thinking. We must be able to challenge our thinking and be willing to follow our passions and interests. And I think that as more and more women do that, then it becomes easier for more women to follow in their footsteps. We need to have people who are prepared to challenge the bias by being the future that they want to see, then other people (both men and women) in the profession can help with that by supporting and recognizing that they need to play a part in making this a comfortable, and safe, and supportive environment for everybody around them to work in. And through that, we can then start to pave the way for more women being able to follow and come into the profession.


Diverse international and interracial group of standing women, women empowering women

How women in tech can break industry biases

Diverse international and interracial group of standing women, women empowering women

Article provided by Elka Goldstein, interim CEO of the London Tech Week conference EQL: HER

Representation of women in the tech industry has been a widely discussed topic, and one we must continue to debate.

In the last five years, gender representation has improved however despite this, just 26% of those in the tech workforce are women.

It’s not surprising then that many tech leaders are now mindful of age-old problems such as the gender gap and the lack of women in the tech talent pipeline.

As the tech industry takes a central role in helping the global economy rebound, it must seize the moment to be inclusively bold. We need every talented entrepreneur contributing to a strong and lasting UK recovery.

Lack of investment in women-led start-ups must be addressed

Despite generating more than twice as much revenue per dollar invested, when compared to male-founded companies, companies founded by women continue to receive the lowest share of investment in the UK. If we look at the statistics:

of pitch decks received by VCs include one or more women founders

of investments went to startups with one or more women founders

of investment value went to teams with one or more women founders

VCs are in the privileged position of making investments that have a real impact on the world we live in.

It is not the women who need to change how they pitch or who they target, it is the structural bias towards women-led businesses that needs to change.

However, it’s not only that few women-led businesses are invested in, it’s also that there are so few women in positions of power to invest in start-ups. Women are significantly under-represented in investment teams, with merely 13% of decision-makers in the UK’s venture capital scene.

Unconscious bias

Although gender representation is going through an organic shift due to the more progressive hiring policies of recent years, two-thirds (66%) of technology recruiters say bias is an issue in hiring, with resumes regarded as a major contributory factor.

The best way to eliminate unconscious bias is to call it out and put a name on it so that it can be addressed at work, at home and in school, with more people having conversations about it. When we have open and honest conversations we’re able to see unconscious bias.

Tech businesses should re-evaluate hiring and promotion practices, and become vigilant and aware of how unconscious bias plays a role in decision making. That means recognising affinity bias and putting a stop to trying to find employees that are a “good fit.” The focus should instead be on finding employees that will bring diverse ideas to the table. Only by addressing these issues, will we support the next generation.

Biases start at home

We all have a part to play in breaking biases. They start when we compliment girls’ appearances and praise boys’ actions. Bias start when we encourage predetermined gender specific activities, instead of offering up everything to everyone.

Over the last 10 years, more coding camps and STEM programmes targeted at young people have been developed. This has allowed room for gender specific programmes, such as Girls Who Code or STEAM Girls, where girls can learn a new skill in an industry that is predominately run by men.

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In the meantime, what about the rest of us? 

What about the women who didn’t grow up playing Halo, and were encouraged to reach for the middle as “support staff” and who qualify using Microsoft tools as being “techy”? For many, it feels too late to retrain and be part of an industry that was just not accessible 10 or 15 years ago.

Or for some, being the one woman in the room, sick of being paraded around as a token and way of expressing “This is a safe space for women to work!”. This “token woman” problem doesn’t just happen on boards – it’s seen in every day choices such as putting women forward to speak at events and using the same person to give the appearance of diversity, when often the reality is less so.

Seek out inspirational peers

More needs to be done to support women into the industry. Companies and government still have a lot more to do to counter the perception people have of those that work in tech, and what working in tech really looks like day to day.

Acknowledge the bias, acknowledge that other people had different advantages than you, then choose what you will do with that information.

Find other inspirational women in coding groups, go to a crypto curious event, push yourself to learn something new and instead of feeling too far behind that you can’t catch up — think of it as you are learning in step with the rest of the world as we all navigate new ways of elevating women together in this male dominated industry.

Access to tech role models and forward-thinking leaders

Although it’s clear that changes are happening in the industry, there is still a long way to go. This change can be accelerated by encouraging women to participate in the tech space and a thorough re-examination of unconscious bias.

We are in a make-or-break moment for women in tech, and the choices that leaders in our industry make this year will have profound consequences for women, families, our economy, and the future of technology itself.

That’s why it’s imperative to provide platforms and forums, such as EQL: HER at London Tech Week, for forward-thinking leaders who are determined to address the under-representation of women in technology through action.

London Tech Week will be taking place on the 13 -17 June 2022 at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre, get your event pass here.

Elka Goldstein HeadshotAbout the author

Elka Goldstein is interim CEO for EQL: HER, the global network and event series addressing the gender imbalance in the technology sector. She recently moved to London after working at start-ups in Silicon Valley and launching the enterprise division for drone-maker, DJI. 

After taking on the role last year, Elka has led EQL:HER in their aim to re-balance the technology industry, securing an inclusive future across all businesses. Elka believes in real actionable change to create a more equitable world, championing those who promote gender equality and overturn tired stereotypes. 

Having worked in the tech and marketing sectors for almost 20 years, Elka’s passion for start-up began while discovering a stealth automotive company, the grew whilst working at Stanford Business School. It was in this role that she curated an exclusive global VIP speaker series, working closely with students beginning their start-up journey.