Was 2021 Good to Women in Technology?
It has been a year of adjustment. We have settled into the pandemic. Adapted to a “new normal.” In the workplace, this shift has offered opportunities as well as challenges. It’s no secret that many women have been leaving the workforce since the pandemic began. One in three women are considering downshifting their careers. Four out of ten are thinking about leaving altogether or switching their employment. (Women in the Workplace)
This got us wondering.
How are women working in technology faring?
Burnout is a problem.
57% of women have experienced job fatigue compared to 36% of men. Women have also taken on more responsibilities at work and at home. Up to 42% of women reported they have taken on most of the household work during the pandemic compared to only 11% of men. Women are also twice as likely to play a greater role in managing childcare:
“I’m appalled by how many women have had to drop out of the workforce because of family circumstances brought on by the pandemic.” Leela Srinivasan. Chief Marketing Manager of Survey Monkey (TrustRadius)
The glass ceiling persists.
Two out of five women found gender bias to be barrier to promotion. In tech workspaces, women are outnumbered 2 to 1 by men and in some cases as much as 5 to 1. Women in the technology sector feel they must work harder than their male counterparts to prove their value. (TrustRadius)
The numbers don’t lie.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 2.2 million fewer women in the labor force in October 2020 compared to October 2019. That’s a sobering statistic. The number of employed women is down 3.1% from February 2020. The male labor force is down only 2.2% for that same time period. (Gallup)
Put simply? Since the beginning of the pandemic, nearly half a million more women than men have exited the workforce.
So, how do we do better?
According to a TrustRadius poll, here are the top 4 asks women in technology have for employers:
1. Mentoring programs that offer support (72%)
2. Flexibility in scheduling time and location of work (remote vs at home) (64%)
3. More unconscious bias training (57%)
4. Equal maternity and paternity leave (55%)
The tech industry can and should do better. For women to stay, or return, to the technology sector, we need to be prepared to offer them support when they do.
(2021, March 9) TrustRadius 2021 Women in Tech Report. TrustRadius.
Women in the Workplace 2020: The State of Women in Corporate America. Women In the Workplace.
Rothwell & Saad (2021, March 9) How Have U.S. Working Women Fared During the Pandemic? Gallup.