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IWD2022 and a conversation around women in tech

IWD2022 and a conversation around women in tech

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International Women’s Day 2022 has now become a worldwide movement. It celebrates and upholds the achievements of women, and aims to advance the campaign for true gender equality. This year’s theme for IWD is all about #BreakTheBias.

At DD, we are actively encouraging both diversity and inclusion amongst our staff. In celebration of this year’s event, we sat down with our Senior Project Manager, Jess and our Senior Software Engineer, Nina to get their thoughts on what #IWD2022 means to them, and what barriers women in web development, and the wider space, still face in the industry today.

Hi both, can you tell us a bit about your current role at Digital Detox?

JC: I work as a Senior Project Manager at DD, working closely with a wealth of diverse clients across lots of different industries, to help transform products by recommending the best technology to set them up successfully for the future

NK: I’m a Senior Software Engineer, which means I’m involved both in designing solutions for our clients to solve technical problems, as well as practically implementing these using coding languages such as JavaScript.

Why do you think International Women’s Day is such a powerful movement?

JC: International Women’s Day is an iconic day that celebrates the achievements of women and raises awareness for equality, which is huge. When I first joined the tech industry, it was very male-dominated, with only 1 or 2 women within the team. This is starting to change though, and I can see that more and more women are joining these specialist companies.

NK: It’s an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of women, but also reflect on how far there is to go. I think sometimes it’s interpreted as an appreciation day for women’s free labour, which isn’t really the point.

What can organisations do to champion women entering and progressing within the tech space?

JC: We should celebrate successful women within tech, which in turn will encourage others to join and be part of an ever-evolving industry. When we aim to create an equal working culture, we are encouraging women from all walks of life, to show that they too can make a difference.

NK: Recruiting women in tech should revolve around actively trying to hire people from non-traditional backgrounds, and negotiating their pay based on their potential rather than their confidence. Once within the tech space, I think the most important aspect is creating a safe and welcoming culture for all, which is arguably the hardest to achieve.

How has Digital Detox supported and championed women within the company?

JC: DD are always looking at new ways to make the workplace more inclusive. For instance, we have recently joined Motherboard. This is a fantastic cause that encourages working mums to get into tech. This is something very close to my heart, being a working mum myself.

NK: What DD does well is celebrating people’s individuality. I have never felt like I needed to conform to a particular mould of what a developer should be like.

What positive changes have you seen over the past five years in the tech space?

JC: The biggest change I have seen is ways of working and flexibility. It used to be frowned upon if you were working from home, even occasionally. There needed to be a shift in mindset which reflected an understanding of other responsibilities that we have. I feel that this has been hugely positive, and allows for a better work/life balance.

NK: I’ve seen more conversation about intersectional feminism and initiatives like coding boot camps aimed specifically at black women. I do worry though that the pandemic has reversed some of this positive change, and might have triggered a shift for some women back into roles as primary caregivers.

What advice would you have for women that are looking to get into tech?

JC: Go for it! I believe there are so many more opportunities for women to further their careers within the tech industry. On top of that, the industry is so fast-paced so there is always something new to learn. Overall, this kind of environment keeps things interesting for years to come.

NK: It’s OK not to be the best! You still have a valid role in tech sitting in the middle, or even at the bottom, of a technical team. Get yourself in the door, show them what you can do and rise to the top based on uniqueness, not conformity.

At Digital Detox, we take pride in being people-led and making our workplace as inclusive as possible. Whether that is the fact that we are made up of 15 nationalities and 12 different languages, or our constant commitment to charities and communities, such as Housing for Women and Motherboard. We’re excited for the future possibilities open to everyone in tech.

If you’d like to find out more about our pledge to inclusivity, and how you can work with us in the future, get in touch with our friendly team today.

We are always looking for talented developers, designers and digital strategists, and are always striving to do what we can to remain a diverse workforce.