Alpesh Patel’s Political Sketchbook: Women We Need You!

Wednesday 15th February 2023 04:52 EST

So the UK missed a recession. Why are we stagnating? Because so many people are out of the workforce is one reason. Last week I co-hosted an event in Parliament for women in tech and finance.

From my years of experience and study of the issue, and working with them, I can say with certainty that having more women in tech and finance is not only important, but essential for the growth and innovation of these industries.

Studies have consistently shown that companies with diverse teams, including gender diversity, tend to perform better financially. For example, a 2020 study by McKinsey found that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity were 21% more likely to outperform those in the bottom quartile.
Another study by Peterson Institute for International Economics found that companies with 30% or more women in leadership positions had better financial performance than those with fewer women in leadership.
However, despite the clear benefits, women are still underrepresented in tech and finance. According to a 2020 report by Girls Who Code, only 24% of computing jobs in the US are held by women. In finance, a 2020 report by the Global Financial Centre Index found that only 22% of senior finance roles are held by women globally.
So what is holding women back from breaking into these industries?
There are several hurdles that women in tech and finance face, including a lack of female role models and mentors, a gender pay gap, and unconscious bias in the workplace.
One of the biggest obstacles for women in tech and finance is a lack of female role models and mentors. Research has shown that having someone to look up to and seek guidance from is a critical factor in career advancement for women. However, in many cases, women are not able to find female role models and mentors in these male-dominated industries.
The gender pay gap is another major hurdle that women in tech and finance face. Despite advances in equality legislation, a report by PwC found that women in finance still earn an average of 20% less than men. This pay gap has a ripple effect throughout women's careers and makes it harder for them to progress and achieve their full potential. (Don't even start on diversity gap).
Finally, (un)conscious bias can manifest in a variety of ways, from women being overlooked for promotions to not receiving equal pay for equal work.
Despite these hurdles, there is reason for hope. There are many organizations and initiatives working to promote women in tech and finance and provide support to those who are breaking into these fields.

comments powered by Disqus

to the free, weekly Asian Voice email newsletter