Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) policies are steering the future for businesses, providing equal opportunity, better results and room for innovation.
In 2014, Google released its first diversity report, becoming the first major tech company to do so. This pioneering move made other technology companies review the diversity within their teams. However, transparency can only get one so far. In 2016, it was reported that only 18.74% of data engineers are women, along with 7% of STEM workers are African, American and Hispanic, despite making up 28% of the population in the US. As a recruitment agency who specialise in data, we truly believe that a diverse workforce is imperative for all technology companies: here are five reasons why.
1. Improves retention levels
The desire for diversity is particularly palpable among a younger generation of tech workers and innovators. A study from Research Gate (2020) depicted how a diverse workforce climate improved retention amongst nearly all employees. This, along with Deloitte’s recent 2020 Global Millennial Survey, discovered that during the pandemic, younger generations were ‘unyielding’ in their values, and wanted to positively shape the world. Therefore, the appetite for a diverse workforce is plainly growing: it makes sense to act now, rather than be left behind.
2. Provides opportunities for mentorship and growth
We’ve hosted many webinars and networking initiatives where women in particular, who may have a specialist job in data, lack mentorship or opportunity to improve their craft. This is backed up by the Network of Executive Women’s 2018 report which found that fewer women than men think there are any role models or mentors they can relate to in the workplace. How do I find a mentor? How can I connect with people like myself? are questions many diverse groups are asking. This can be resolved, in part, if organisations continue to make diverse hires.
3. Creates a stronger workforce
In addition to diversity making sense on an employee engagement level, it makes sense on a business level too. Studies as far back as 2013 have shown that companies with employees who have diverse, inherent traits (traits you were born with), and acquired traits (traits you gain from experience) are 45% more likely to report a growth in market share over the previous year, as well as 70% more likely to report the capture of a new market.
4. Data is diverse – therefore we must be too
The world of data recruitment is extensive. From education, for-profit companies, non-profit organisations; data jobs can be applied in virtually every domain. This broad application makes it attractive to an array of different people with diverse interests, passions and motivations. It’s important to factor this in when building a data team.
5. Flexible working leads to greater opportunities for all
This new era of remote working has opened up major opportunities for technology and data organisations to be more diverse. In November 2020, Open Access Government spoke about how traditional office jobs have, until recently, been ‘tethered’ to geographical areas. Socio-economic status, educational backgrounds and ethnicity are often linked to geographical location, and for the majority, the costs of living and commuting are significant. The original office model, in which many would commute five days a week, also ostracises the disabled community, who are often faced with commuting issues and/or ill-equipped facilities in their workplace and may lose out on job opportunities as a result.
This is an exciting time for hiring: with many data management roles offering full-time remote work, it’s worth taking note of the value and diverse opportunities this flexibility can bring.
At Trust in SODA, we will be hosting our webinar ‘Diversity in Data’ on 4th March, where we will be discussing this in-depth. Register now and save your spot.
If you’re looking to build diverse teams, get in touch with me at nadja@trustinsoda, and take a look at our exciting data opportunities here.
Trust in SODA is part of Trinnovo Group. We aim to build diversity, create inclusion and encourage workplace innovation.