Is a Lack of Representation Tech's Biggest Challenge?
Given the infinitely long list to choose from, it’s tough to pinpoint tech’s biggest challenge right now. Among the talent shortages, skill gaps, recessions, very public meltdowns and the ensuing paradoxical layoffs, a common thread emerges, a crisis of representation.
The figures are more than just troubling, they’re indicative of systematic exclusion. Black women make up just 0.7% of the UK tech workforce for example, and peer Martha Lane Fox once claimed the industry hadn't progressed in 25 years.
Real change is possible, and it is happening, albeit slowly. Senior decision-makers and recruiters must step up and recognise the inherent value of a diverse tech workforce, how to get there, and the risk of failing to act.
Building a Tech Future for Everyone
Tech has historically been a fairly exclusive field of work, boasting a high bar to entry (expensive equipment, competitive markets, narrow networks, extensive role requirements), often resulting in a complex impact on equality within the space.
Building a tech future for everyone means considering everyone’s backgrounds and creating inclusive environments. At Trust in SODA, we’re proud to work with a range of diverse candidates and clients from all over the world, and it propels us towards our mission goals to build diversity, create inclusion, and encourage innovation.
We partner with superb non-profits like Black Girls in Tech to continue empowering voices in the tech space, and it helps us reshape recruitment's role in the modern world of work.
Solving Diverse Problems
Tech is best at solving problems when it solves problems for everyone. Solutions that are built for the community by members of that same community are likely to have more of an impact. Plus, a range of perspectives is needed to target a wider audience, an extraordinarily tough task when viewed through the lens of a homogenised workforce.
A lack of representation negatively affects outcomes – just look at the gender-discriminatory tracking systems used by many of the world’s top companies. Businesses that fail to account for the value of different perspectives will likely struggle to keep their competitive edge for any substantial amount of time.
Corporate responsibility is in the spotlight, just where it should be, and there’s no hiding for companies who shirk it, not when the most diverse generation in the history of the world is entering the workforce.
Attracting and Retaining Tech Talent
The retention problem in tech is a perpetual cycle, one that’s so often driven by the failure to create inclusive environments. When your people are quitting due to a lack of inclusion, it’s hardly going to convince your talent pool that you’re the company worth working for.
Representation is crucial in a company’s efforts to attract (and retain) the best talent, and it doesn’t start and end with the hiring process.
A good employer brand shows the world its commitment to diversity and inclusion long before anyone even considers what kind of policy might be in place. Measuring progression is important too, particularly in tech, which doesn’t have the best reputation for inclusivity right now.
Here at Trust in SODA, we always place our candidates in environments that we know they can thrive in. We know that recruitment has a role in shaping the industry, and we plan to make sure we take it in the right direction.
If you’re hoping to access the deepest and best talent pool, your hiring managers will need to look far beyond their personal networks. Trust in SODA takes a community-led approach to hiring, and when combined with our DEIB (diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging), methodology, we can ensure that bias is eliminated from the process along every step of the journey.
If you’re hoping to hire tech talent you can depend on, reach out to the SODA squad today, we’ve got the passion, tools, and people to support you.