Women are put off by the image of a male-dominated IT workplace, say employers
Women are far less well-represented than men in IT recruitment, with more than half of IT employers saying one in twenty, or five percent, of IT job applicants are women, a new study has found.
Most technology employers, 91 percent, said they are receiving less than one-fifth, or 20 percent, of job applications from women, according to figures from IT recruitment company Technojobs. Industry figures from 2013 showed there were 176,000 women employed as IT professionals in the UK, compared with 953,000 men, making up about 16 percent of the IT workforce.
Nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of those surveyed said an off-putting image of a male-dominated environment was to blame for the disparity, with nearly one-third (30 percent) citing a lack of encouragement and career advice at school as an obstacle.
Security and IT support were two of the areas in the IT sector in which women were least represented, with women making up 10 percent of support staff and holding 14 percent of security positions.
“It’s not just the question of a skills shortage, but a lack of choosing IT as a profession in the first place, as women hesitate to take their place in what the results reveal to be a male-dominated domain,” stated Technojobs managing director Anthony Sherick. “The lack of women in technology also exacerbates the skills gap within the IT industry.”
He said changes should begin with education.
The company said last week that employers are facing an undersupply of IT security staff, forcing companies to rely on contractors. Pay for full-time staff in the sector saw a 10 percent rise year-on-year as a result of the skills shortage, Technojobs said.
A recent study found that women account for only 11 percent of jobs in the information security sector.
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