“Women have revolutionized the workplace, not only by their presence, but through their perspective, skills and demands.” This quote from Andres Tapia, Korn Ferry, speaks to the contributions of women in the workplace. Women demonstrate reliability, innovation and perseverance and show no signs of slowing down.
It is not a secret that women are imperative to any thriving work environment. Yet, women have low or diminishing representation and are paid less, especially in traditionally male careers like tech. Today, women make 82 cents to every dollar earned by men. Furthermore, African-American women earn 63 cents less.  As the field of technology continues to catapult us into the future, the irony is that women are left behind. In some states, women are paid as much as $15K less than men for roles in tech.  As industries continue to tout increased diversity numbers, we continue to witness the number of women in tech roles sadly remaining stagnant.
Changing the current trajectory requires a solid recruiting plan, dollars and commitment. Remaining competitive and innovative requires employers to move away from traditionally targeted audiences and implement practices that will align them to become Employers of Choice in this competitive work environment. This includes hiring and paying equitable wages to women in traditionally male dominated careers. Because women control over $31.8 trillion in worldwide spending,  this type of purchasing power should demand fair treatment, however, we’re not there yet.
Leave No Stone Unturned
- Pipeline Creation- Establishing meaningful relationships with students is beneficial. Organizations should consider volunteering and utilizing internship programs for high school and college students. Also, delve deeper. Not every talented candidate chooses the college pathway. Connect with churches, community-based groups, workforce development programs and other training programs. This allows employers to engage current employees and potential candidates through community involvement, while increasing their brand footprint.
- Pay Transparency- Organizations should be transparent about pay. Companies touting equitable workplace culture but are not paying fair wages across the board are fooling themselves. Also, asking women about current salary inherently keeps women at lower wages.
- Establishing DEI Programming- Companies who allocate time and money to learning more about underrepresented populations tend to be more apt to doing the work of creating inclusive work environments. Demonstrating this during the recruiting and interviewing phase of employment is key. Also, candidates want to see people who look like them represented within the company. Utilizing education from robust DEI programs can aid with recruiting women and other underrepresented populations.
Recruiting diverse talent, such as women requires intentionality, accountability and commitment. The “pool” is full of talented and qualified women; however, organizations must move beyond the shallow end.