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ONS data points to rise in UK tech employment for women

Female professionals accounted for 71% of the new jobs created between June and September 2021

New employment data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that female professionals represented most of the professionals placed in the jobs market between July and September 2021.

According to the report, some 58,000 jobs were created in the information and communication category during the period, of which 41,000 (71%) of the professionals placed were women.

Technology was the third top sector in terms of job creation for women, ONS data suggests, and it is the third fastest sector for job growth in the UK overall.

Commenting on the gender angle of the employment data, Bev White, chief executive at recruitment and technology firm Harvey Nash, said that there seems to be a step up in the number of women working in the tech sector.

“We have now seen almost 150,000 jobs created for women in UK tech over the past two years. If this trend continues, we could begin to see real movement in the gender imbalance that has long existed in tech,” she said.

“Although it is early days, the hybrid working model does seem to be well-suited to women, and I hope that the greater flexibility it brings will help more women thrive in their careers,” White added.

More women have been seeking opportunities technology jobs market. Research by WISE published in October has found that women are more likely to have retrained for a technology role than men. The campaign for encouraging more women into careers in science, tech and engineering found that 15% of women surveyed had retrained for their tech roles, compared with only 7% of men.

More than 2.2 million people in the UK started a new job between July and September, according to the ONS. Moreover, there were 1.17 million job openings in October – up almost 400,000 than before the emergence of Covid-19.

In relation to employment in tech as a whole, the executive noted the sector has made a significant contribution to the bigger picture. According to the ONS, UK employers added 160,000 more workers to their payrolls in October, a record high as companies continue to struggle with worker shortages.

“It’s great to see that the tech sector is once again one of the strongest sources of job creation in the UK. This is not surprising given the huge ongoing demand for digitisation and transformation,” White said.

The number of organisations planning to boost their investments in technology and hire new staff has reached record levels, according to a Harvey Nash survey published earlier this month.

However, the company’s digital leadership report warns that investment plans could be undermined by staff shortages, as tech leaders reported difficulties hiring cyber security specialists, data analysts, technical architects and developers.

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