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On 16 June, WeAreTechWomen held their second large scale event for Women in Tech in 2023. The WeAreTech Festival, held over one day at Etc Venues, Bishopsgate, brought together over 400 professionals in person and over 500 online.

The audience were a mix of tech professionals, aspiring tech enthusiasts, industry leaders and women wishing to get into the tech industry. The festival aimed to provide attendees with valuable career insights, networking opportunities, and inspiration to advance their tech careers. It did not disappoint! Multiple delegates said the festival as one of the best women in tech conferences they have ever attended!

The carefully curated agenda featured a diverse range of sessions, including keynote speeches from Edwina Dunn OBE, former co-founder of DunnHumby, who pioneered the Tesco Clubcard loyalty scheme, alongside panel discussions with individuals such as Sophie Neary, Group Director, UK&I and Ann Hiatt, Author and Investor who previously worked alongside Jeff Bezos at Amazon. In the afternoon there were a choice of 16 workshops spread across four different stages which focused on Leadership, Impact, Networking and Wellbeing. Renowned experts and senior thought leaders from all over Europe and Asia joined the festival to share their top tips and career development strategies around assertiveness, setting boundaries and how to harness your own superpowers.

Networking played a crucial role throughout the festival, with attendees connecting via a series of facilitated speed networking and mentoring sessions hosted by founder, Vanessa Vallely OBE. WeAreTechWomen also invested in the use of Blendology smart badges which resulted in over 9,000 connections being made throughout the day.

Festival Polls

There were several polls running throughout the day which gained valuable insights to how women in tech feel in terms of their career progression.

Audience Polls;
Had experienced the imposter syndrome at some point in their careers 95%
Needed to negotiate more in terms of responsibility and pay 70%
Working flexibly has enhanced their career 75%
Having access to senior leaders and role models in their organisations would accelerate their career prospects 95%
Would apply for a new role if they felt they met 60% or above of the criteria! 22%

During breaks the WeAreTechWomen community of corporate women in tech, female founders, recruiters, and enthusiastic newcomers continued to network and connect creating an ecosystem for collaboration, mentorship, and partnerships. There were also several on site coaches on hand to support guests with any career related dilemmas.

The festival also provided a full exhibition hall which showcased over 10 sponsors, including Barclays, PwC, Accenture, Merkle, Funding Circle, Morgan Stanley, Sky, Edit Development, DWP Digital and Bank of America. Visiting our partners provided ample opportunities for career development and recruitment, allowing job seekers to connect directly with employers, while employers had the chance to showcase their company culture, projects, and job openings.

WeAreTechWomen also supported a number of female entrepreneurs, such as CoCo Ginger Candles and Hian Skin by giving them free space to exhibit and sell their products.

Keynote speakers in the afternoon included, Dame Stephanie Shirley CH, June Sarpong OBE and Cecilie Fjellhoy who was one of the lead characters in Netflix’s Tinder Swindler. These success stories from accomplished individuals in the industry inspired attendees to dream bigger, set ambitious goals, and overcome challenges. Each speaker left the audience with a sense of motivation and empowerment as they encouraged the audience to push the boundaries of their potential.

The festival was a fantastic event for Women in Tech. The combination of networking, knowledge expansion, career opportunities, and inspirational moments created an environment conducive to personal and professional growth.

Our next conference, Level Up, which is aimed at mid to senior level women and men in tech takes place in December.

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