Just 18% of directors of ‘Silicon Roundabout’ tech companies are women

Women better represented at senior level in FTSE100 than the tech firms of Tech City where just 18% of directors are female, research from Procorre has found.

The international professional services consultancy said its findings demonstrate the scale of the issue and the huge effort that is needed to address the problem.

And Tech City is not alone with this problem. Procore found that there are less women in senior levels across the entire industry with women making up just 27% of the total digital workforce, down from 33% in 2002.

Procorre has warned that to unless more is more is done now to make women better represented at top levels in this crucial, high-growth sector, new measures may need to be considered.

These could include a self-imposed target for the industry, similar to the target for the FTSE100, and initiatives to dispel the misconception that start-up and high growth tech companies are hostile to female employees.

Wiktor Podgorski, Contracts & HR Manager at Procorre, said: “There is undoubtedly a shortage of female graduates with the right qualifications to go into the digital industries, but the gender gap in Silicon Roundabout cannot be explained by that alone.

“Women make up 38% of maths graduates, which could easily be a stepping stone into a career in software development.  But in fact, only half of female graduates of science, technology, engineering (STEM) subjects go into STEM careers, compared with 68% of their male peers from the same courses. Technology-based industries seem to be unable to attract the female talent available, and we have to look at the reasons why.

“Self-imposed targets seem to be working in the FTSE100 – they could also help the tech sector to raise its game.

“For Silicon Roundabout’s concentration of high growth companies, there is also a need to reassure women that they are not hostile places to work.

“The last recession proved that job security at larger businesses is not necessarily better than at smaller businesses.  And although start-ups are definitely demanding environments they can also offer great flexibility.  The lack of ingrained corporate culture and open management structures mean that women can be very demanding in setting their working patterns.”