It is no secret that the Tech industry still suffers from a lack of diversity at all levels of the organisation. In a 2020 study by SVB, only 14% of US startups reportedly had a female CEO and only one in four US startups had a woman on the founding team. The COVID-19 crisis may be increasing the existing lack of diversity in tech in many ways.
Many recent studies have shown that women are more affected by the pandemic than men in less obvious ways. For instance, women are more affected by caregiving responsibilities than their male counterparts. Before the pandemic, it was estimated by the UN that females were doing as much as three times unpaid care as men, while the International Labour Organisation has reported that roles of women in the workplace have led to many shouldering a ‘double burden’. With school closures across 185 countries currently affecting nearly 90% of school children, Cigna suggests that studies indicate mothers are expected to be those most impacted.
Having isolated employees working remotely also creates new challenges such as making sure that all employees are equally heard. Distance reinforces people’s tendency to favour people who are like them. It also eliminates the opportunity for spontaneous conversations between different people who may be nearby. Since white men tend to be at the top of tech companies, they will naturally tend to connect with people who are like them and ignore women and people of colour, creating even more of a diversity gap in tech.
Remote-working is giving tech companies a sneak peek into the future of working; tech companies who prioritise diversity and inclusion will be the ones who lead the way and will ultimately come out of the crisis stronger and more resilient,” says Perrine Farque, Diversity Consultant in Tech and Founder of Inspired-Human.
Remote-working and lockdown bring some unprecedented challenges in terms of disconnection and disengagement from the workforce and tech companies are faced with lower employee engagement and lower employee productivity. There are some practical steps that can be implemented to foster diversity, inclusion, and equity in tech during the crisis.
This is why we are hosting a free, educational webinar on “How Tech Companies Can Create the Culture Shift in a Crisis”; the webinar will focus on how tech companies can attract, retain and keep talents engaged in COVID19 amid the fast-pace in the sector; the event will also advise on what tech businesses should do to grow their business fast; it will also discuss why creating the right company culture will improve talent attraction, retention and competitiveness in the current climate and where to start to keep the workforce engaged during the crisis;
This webinar is being offered in response to the current COVID-19 issues and to showcase why diversity and inclusion are critical to tech business recovery. This virtual event is free and is focusing on helping educate business people on what to do to recover and thrive in the current climate. The webinar panellists include Perrine Farque, Diversity Consultant, and founder of Inspired-Human and Gemma Adair, Marketing consultant and founder of Riada Consultancy.