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Monster has launched a Tech Talent Charter, which aims to improve diversity and inclusion across the technology sector.
The recruitment firm has partnered with several technology and skills organisations to develop guidelines to help member firms actively address the lack of women and minority groups in the technology industry.
Partnering with firms such as CodeFirst: Girls, Stemettes and Apps for Good to form a steering group, Monster has developed key outlines and measures to help organisations take a different and more proactive approach to workforce diversity.
According to Andrea Bertone, executive vice-president of Monster Worldwide, one of the main aims of the charter is to “promote greater diversity and inclusion when it comes to the make-up of the workforce in the technology sector”.
“The charter aims to establish a vision, mission goals, initiatives and commitments that will set a framework and act as a catalyst to help businesses in the technology sector to join forces and re-address the big issue we have in the UK, which is the growing digital skills gap,” said Bertone.
The UK will be in need of one million technology workers by 2020, according to Bertone, and yet the recruitment firm is still being told that employers “are struggling to find the talent they need”.
Of those already working in the technology sector in the UK, Bertone highlighted that only 17% are women.
“One of the issues the Tech Charter wants to focus on in particular is diversity. The Tech Charter aims to take positive action to address this imbalance and increase the number of women in the technology world,” she said.
As highlighted in the steering group’s meeting before the launch event, the charter aims to avoid “reinventing the wheel”.
The charter outlines seven core principals that those who sign up will use as a guideline of commitments their organisations should aspire to.
These include the “Rooney Rule” where at least one female candidate (where available) must be put forward for interview, adhering to a technology inclusion accreditation scheme for best practice when looking for talent, helping to build a pipeline of technology talent from the younger generation in the UK and electing a representative who will take responsibility for these commitments.
Members will also be required to help other members to develop future protocols and guidelines, publish diversity profiles to set benchmarks for measurement and help monitor progress through a joint published annual report.
Monster’s Tech Talent Charter commitments
- Commit to a recruitment best practice by implementing the “Rooney Rule”, whereby at least one female candidate must be considered for the job.
- Adhere to a “tech inclusion” accreditation scheme to support adoption of diversity best practice.
- Support and create initiatives that will grow the UK’s next generation of technology talent.
- Appoint a senior-level representative to act as an individual responsible for upholding the charter commitments.
- Work with other organisations to develop future protocols.
- Agree to share information surrounding diversity to build a UK-wide diversity portfolio to establish a measurement benchmark.
- Contribute to a joint annual report to help future measurement of the progress of diversity in the UK tech sector.
Six workstreams have seen set up to assist members of the charter to implement the charter’s protocols and best practices, including a best practice and recruitment workstream, best practice in retention workstream, marketing and promotion workstream, annual report and measurement workstream and an ecosystem, policy and education/talent pipeline workstream.
Each of these groups are headed by representatives from organisations in the steering group.
“The initiative is a result of inspiring women and supportive, committed men. That’s a summary of the Tech Talent Charter,” said Sinead Bunting from Monster, who led the project.
“What are the benefits? You will get a chance to shape the agenda – to shape what’s in the charter. You will be seen as committed. You will have access to all of this good practice to get you a more diverse workforce – and a more diverse workforce is more successful.”