In many sectors of the business world the gender gap between men and women is closing in quickly.

However, the technology industry, which is already notoriously male-dominated, has been showing a recent and steady decline regarding women who find and pursue degrees in what should be a growing pool of opportunity.

Let’s review the facts!

  • In 2013, 57% of occupations in the workforce were held by women.
  • However in computing occupations, only 25% of the workforce was female.
  • Of all the CIO jobs in Fortune 500 companies, only 20% were held by women.

Unfortunately, this disparity is even more present at the college level. Only .4% of freshman females intend to major in computer science at major research universities.

At this point you might be rolling your eyes and asking “So, what’s the big deal?”

Well, technology is a big deal. It is one of the fastest growing sectors of the job market and its products are accessed by men and women alike.

The truth is, coding and technology know-how is becoming a necessary component to a well-rounded career and, without female perspectives, technological advances could be subpar or irrelevant to half of the world’s population.

Diverse Teams are Effective Teams

Truth be told, businesses and individuals have a growing dependence on technology.

IT fields could use all the qualified professionals they can lay their hands on– regardless of gender. In the United States, we simply lack experienced engineers of all varieties.

In 2013 the world’s most valuable company was the famous technology company: Apple.

Not only do they directly create millions of jobs but they are also a catalyst for social and economic development.

However, even top companies like Google and Facebook struggle with the lack of software engineers that make their vision possible.

Let’s skip the stereotype that techies have a profoundly quiet existence and realize that innovative product development almost always takes place within the confines of a diverse and intelligent team of people.

Women can offer teams valuable insight that can help launch technology related products and companies into exciting new places.

A diverse group of people will always cook up a diverse set of opinions and will be able to find the best approach to any given task. They almost always outperform teams composed of “experts” because their team problem-solving will trump personal achievement.

Women Understand Other Women

Technology disparity also hurts individual companies.

Logically stated: at least half the users of technology products are women therefore it is in the company’s best interest to staff women who can contribute to ongoing projects as well as future development tasks.

According to a report by Parks Associates, women download more music, movies and games than their male counterparts.

In fact, female consumer habits would suggest that they account for $4.3 trillion dollars of U.S. consumer spending and that they are directly involved in 85% of all household purchasing decisions.

In fairness, not all women in a technology company will be experts in products designed for women.

However, it is certainly within the companies benefit to actively hire and listen to the perspectives of representatives that belong to one of the largest economics forces in the world.

This will not only help develop female “sub-industries” but will also increase overall market strength.

We Need Female Problem-Solvers

On average, men and women approach problems from a different perspective.

Women can open doors to technological advancements because they can often see the bigger picture. They tend to be design-oriented and can access the range of emotions and satisfaction levels of their consumers.

Beyond general differences, smart women work hard for everything then want in life. In the growing technology industry their insight and problem-solving skills are necessary.

Technology is knocking at the door. With its growing importance in our society, it is important to allow women the opportunity to create and develop products that will change our future.

What Can We Do To Get More Women In The Tech Industry?

Do you know of any amazing technology-related startups that were started by a woman? Give them a shout!

Bonus!

If you’re a young woman who is interested in learning more about coding, check out Girls Who Code, it’s an organization that educates, inspires, and equips high school girls with the skills and resources to pursue opportunities in computing fields.

The fact of the matter is that we need more women in the tech industry, so let’s start getting them involved at a younger age.

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