6 Benefits of Diversity in Technology

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Technology as an industry is a very promising one for job searchers worldwide though there is a discrepancy in terms of equal distribution of employees in this industry based on their gender and ethnicity. There is a possibility that job seekers are unaware of the many benefits of finding a job in the technology industry regardless of their gender or ethnicity.

Below is a list of the 5 most prominent tech companies that illustrates the representations of employees based on their gender and ethnicity.

There are a lot of opportunities for the right candidate. And not only the employee but the company and its products and services would improve substantially if there is diversity in a team.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that in two years there will be 1.4 million vacant computer science-related positions and only 400,000 qualified candidates [2]. This simply means that there would be a lot of seats unfilled in the industry and we have to start encouraging everyone NOW who have the interest to study and pursue a career in computer science or any of the disciplines of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

While the majority of tech companies adhere to equal treatment amongst their employees, there still exist instances which ultimately contributes towards the minorities being underrepresented.

1. Bullying

An online article outlines bullying as one of the reasons for driving underrepresented employees out of their jobs [3]. There can be overt behavior such as non-inclusion in conferences or meetings, not trusting the other person’s opinions or treating the minority in a way that they are not well informed.

2. Sexual Harassment

Jabs such as “sexual favors are needed to get a promotion” or an undercurrent of sexism in conversations are also contributing factors. And sometimes there are more subtle comments that can lead the victim in questioning whether it is brutal enough to report or should they just grow a thick skin [4].

3. Racism

Subtle comments like joking about one’s attire, native place, education, etc. can make an employee from the minority feel inferior or uncomfortable. Perpetrators might not resort to blatant racist comments but an undercurrent of hostility in conversations can hurt a person’s sentiments which can lead to the employee resigning from their jobs [5].

While the above are major problems that are faced by minorities in the tech industry experience, below are 6 good reasons why women and people from all ethnicity must be a part of the industry. This not only benefits the employees but the companies as well.

1. Women form the highest Purchasing Power

A study by Deloitte shows that women form 85% of the nation’s purchasing decisions.

“They account for $4.3 trillion of total U.S. consumer spending of $5.9 trillion, making women the largest single economic force not just in the United States, but in the world.” [6]

Being a large part of the consumer base, if women are represented more in the tech industry, their expertise and perspectives will lead to a better understanding of the marketplace hence generate more innovative products.

2. Pay Gap is Lesser in Comparison to Other Industries

All around the world, there is a fight for pay parity amongst genders. While there are significant gaps in pay seen in many industries, the computer science industry can be said to be a progressive one. The computer science field has one of the smallest pay gaps with “women earning 94% of what men earn” [7]! With lesser pay parity and more jobs available soon, women should be encouraged in studying in these disciplines and making a career in the STEM industries.

3. Diverse Workforce have Varied Insights

Consumers range from diverse backgrounds. If the industry has a diverse workforce, they would be able to give better consumer insights because they would be able to understand the cultural nuances firsthand. Asians do represent a part of the US tech industry. But what about the African Americans, Latinas, and other ethnic and cultural groups? They also form a percentage of the consumer base hence employees from such ethnic groups should also be represented in the tech industry.

4. An abundance of Tech Jobs

Now that the statistics make it quite clear that only 400,000 seats will be filled out of the 1.4 Million jobs available, it is vital that the community that is underrepresented and who may not only bring diversity but also provide a new window towards procuring innovation sees inclusion in the tech industry. Encouraging more women and other ethnic groups to study computer science or other disciplines of STEM would fill the vacant seats!

5. Flexible Hours 

More and more companies in the tech industry are opting for more non-traditional work procedures such as video conferencing and work from homes as they provide more emphasis on quality of work and allowance of employees to work around their personal schedules. It provides work and life balance to all employees irrespective of their gender.

6. Maternity Leave and Child Care

With companies such as Facebook, Google, and Apple being trendsetters in helping out their female employees during maternity, it provides a classic workspace for women to thrive. Facebook provides six weeks of paid leave to women so that they can care for ailing children as well as relatives. This is very helpful since women are usually the ones taking the roles of caregivers. They also give 4 months of maternity leave! Besides providing 22 weeks of maternity leave, Google also provides a cash gift to parents after having a baby. [8] Having such trendsetters in the industry only pushes women towards finding jobs in computer science or tech fields.

These are our reasons for women and other ethnic groups to join the tech industry. It’s good that the tech industry has a lot to offer everyone regardless of their gender and ethnicity. While these are our viewpoints, we would love to know yours. Please let us know your thoughts through the comments sections below. Also, stay tuned to Alumni Insider for more helpful articles like this.

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References:
1. Diversity in Tech – Business Insider
2. Claim of 1.4 million computer science jobs with only 400,000 computer science graduates to fill them
3. Why Sexism in Tech is More Complicated Than You Think
4. Why Sexism in Tech is More Complicated Than You Think
5. Why Sexism in Tech is More Complicated Than You ThinkSexism, racism and bullying are driving people out of tech, US study finds
6. Diversity as an Engine of Innovation
7. Women in Computer Science – Getting Involved in Stem
8. Women in Computer Science – Getting Involved in Stem

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