Senior IT women want action on increasing female numbers

Senior women in IT called for a campaign to boost the number of female IT workers at a roundtable last week.

At the event, hosted by trade association Intellect, the women said that the UK's economic competitiveness is at risk unless the IT skills gap is plugged with more female staff.

Gillian Arnold, hardware outsourcing executive at IBM, said, "This needs to be done on a full time basis. We can only devote three to four hours a week and there needs to be real resources put into it. The industry should pay because it will benefit."

The group agreed that attraction and retention of women need urgent attention. Within those issues, efforts need to go into getting young girls interested in technology, tackling the gender pay gap, changing the "old boys' network" and "geeky" culture of IT, making working flexible and child care available, and increasing retraining for women returning after having families.


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