Close site search

Simply start typing to search Changeboard and then press enter

Women still have to challenge stereotypes in IT

Posted on from Changeboard

Recent research suggests that women that pursue a career in STEM subjects are more likely to be paid as well as their male counterparts. Despite this, they still have to challenge pre-held conceptions about their place in the IT industry.

The two biggest barriers faced by women working in IT are demonstrating their competence and challenging pre-existing stereotypes.

In a survey of UK IT directors carried by Robert Half, 57% of respondents felt that women have to go further to demonstrate their competence. 54% felt that lingering biases were an obstacle to their progression in the field.

Other challenges faced included earning respect (30%) and working in a male-dominated environment (28%).

Sara Newman, operations director at technical consultancy Amido said: “The shortage of women in IT is alarming. That’s not to say there isn’t a challenge for skilled IT professionals overall, but the number of women is far lower than it should be. 

“Challenging the perception of the IT industry earlier on will mean that as girls grow up, they will be more receptive to a continuing their education in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).”

Recently, there has been a call for women to continue with STEM subjects, both to close the gender pay gap and create more diversity in the industry. Robert Half’s research suggests that despite the worrying figures of the barriers women face, there will be parity in the future.

While a fifth of IT directors say that men will continue to hold the majority of positions in IT, almost half (47%) see a future where women will reach parity. 26% of respondents said they believe women will match or exceed the number of men in staffing and leadership roles.

Better understanding of the diversity of roles within IT should lead to a greater number of women entering the field.

Newman added: “The IT industry has developed a reputation where many think it’s all about squirrelling away in the dark writing code. While this is still a viable career path for some, it isn’t the only option.  

“There are a number of roles that require project management or business analysis, or are purely management positions where you don’t have to be a purely ‘techy’ person. In some cases it can even be a benefit to the position for you not to be highly technical so you can bring the right perspective to a business objective or challenge.”

Content by email

Thanks! You have been subscribed to receive emails about the following subjects.

Get more with Changeboard

Changeboard is a global HR jobs site, career advice resource and events platform to help HR and recruitment professionals find the perfect job to progress their careers. We're here to help you change the way you work.

Register now

Changeboard Magazine

Changeboard is read by more than 22,000 senior leaders in print and 85,000 online.

  • Get Changeboard Magazine

  • Get Changeboard Magazine
    on mobile

  • Get Changeboard Magazine
    in print

Subscribe to Changeboard today for:

  • Engaging and relevant decision-support content
  • Exclusive interviews with CEOs & HR leaders
  • In-depth profiles, case studies & insights from progressive senior HR & resourcing practitioners
  • Stimulating career advice, delivered in bitesized chunks to help busy professionals advance their careers efficiently.
Get the Changeboard magazine
Get Changeboard Magazine

Job search saved

Your search has been successfully saved.

Register or log in to manage job alerts.