The IT sector is becoming more feminine
Posted 6 Months ago
Why are there so few women in the IT professions? Zoom in on the composition of ABAKUS IT-SOLUTIONS, and try to find the answers.
We could tell you about these "human calculators", these "computers in skirts", used as early as 1945 by NASA to calculate the trajectory of missiles, which 20 years later have dropped to less than 50% of the workforce in the IT professions. But at ABAKUS, we prefer to look straight ahead. And to adhere to UNESCO's 2021 report on science, which states that "to be intelligent, the digital revolution must be inclusive". Here are (at least) 3 reasons to embark on it with us.
More gender diversity
"There are currently 26 women in our teams, out of 110 people. The majority are administrative/recruiters. 9 are technicians or developers," says Caroline Gillardin, Administration & Finance Manager. "When I started, there was only one: ABAKUS is slowly but surely becoming more female. In the meantime, we dream of balance and parity, of a greater mix, of a less geeky and more feminine sector.
"IT is a world of sharp and precise people," says Philippe Houssier, Partner - Sales & Business Development. "And women are generally more precise than men. Without wishing to fall into clichés, they also generally make dialogue richer, because they are less conflictual and more capable of hearing constructive criticism. Perhaps because, unlike men, the majority have had to fight their way through?
In order to return to the historical parity of the sector, it is probably necessary to work upstream. If schools, then universities and companies, were to work together to give more visibility to women in the IT sector, wouldn't more women candidates dare to take the plunge?
Élodie Houssier, Business Developer, adds: "Ideally, you should choose a job that you like. So you have to inform people very early on about the different courses of study, and stop assigning jobs according to gender - you'll be a nurse, my daughter. Because nothing at ABAKUS will ever prevent a woman from getting the job she wants. Neither will a man: what we require of all our talents is ability, desire and involvement. A little bit of madness, perhaps, too. As for the rest, you can arrive at ABAKUS with a limited background and evolve, according to the training and experience shared by the older members. There is always someone in the team to lean on when in doubt.
A recent study by Michael Page Technology, observes that "women are already moving more willingly than men into data-related professions: more than 7% of them are now involved in this field, compared to less than 3% of men. Surprising? Not so much. These new jobs require advanced mathematical or statistical skills, but also project management skills, a real business vision, excellent interpersonal skills and a great ability to translate results into operational use. They are also accessible to business analysts or professionals from digital marketing.
However, the needs of companies in terms of IT skills are evolving faster than the range of skills available on the market. Today, at ABAKUS and elsewhere, technical mastery is valued before diplomas, while comfort is given priority: "That of the clients, naturally. And for the employees: because not everyone can be in the office all the time, everyone is provided with the equipment, facilities and support that will enable them to work and grow best, wherever they are," emphasises Mandy Cremer, Administration Officer.
Local Proximity Responsible at the Joint Research Center of the European Commission in Geel (Antwerp) since January 2020, Leen Hannes confirms. And when asked what advice she would give to young girls thinking about their future, she replies: "Do what you like best, never forget that anything is possible. You can work in IT, love it, and build a career and a family at the same time. Just do it!"
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