IT employers need to employ more women to get the best staff

If IT employers want to have the best staff, they must employ more women. That was the challenge laid down earlier this month to...

If IT employers want to have the best staff, they must employ more women. That was the challenge laid down earlier this month to all in the IT industry by Department of Trade & Industry minister Jacqui Smith, speaking at the national A-Star Awards for the best female A-level students.

"Girls are good at IT," she said. "In the 2001-2002 A-level results girls were twice as successful as boys in IT.

"IT as a profession is exciting, challenging and offers variety, as well as being one of the higher-paid occupations. IT is too often not seen as an area where girls and women belong."

At the A-Star Awards, which were supported by Computer Weekly, Accenture partner Kate Sample gave the finalists from across the country two key challenges. "Whatever you do, challenge yourself, and above all, aim high," she said. "Consider a career in IT because it is a career that will challenge you and reward you, and there is a high demand for female talent. Companies recognise the value of diversity, and that women bring a unique set of skills that make the difference."

Teresa Thurston, from Poole in Dorset was the winner of the Axios A-Star Award for the best A-level student in the UK.

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