At KJR Australia we love International Women’s Day. Even though we are continually invested in supporting equality and equity in tech, this week offers yet another opportunity to bolster the voices of our strong, smart and talented KJR women.
Of the major technology conglomerates globally, only 25% of employees are women. Staggering when you consider the first coder in the 21st century was female! The gender disparity across tech industries is felt far and wide “disparity between men and women is a global issue and giving equal opportunities to men and women is very important- I would really emphasise on this point” says KJR Consultant Anu. But at KJR we are helping to close this gap.
Last year alone 50% of KJR new starters were women- which speaks to the culture we have established in fostering equal opportunities for our female consultants.
Including the facilitation of equal opportunities for women in tech with the support of The Young Women Leaders in AI program read more here which increases participation, development and leadership of girls and women in STEM education, careers and innovation whilst reducing cultural barriers to tech entrepreneurship for women through hands on training of big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies.
Not only are we committed to providing mentorship, support and development of women in tech, we proudly encourage women’s leadership in other spaces. Including sport and education through the ANUAFC x KJR Women in Leadership Scholarship in 2021. “As a STEM-based industry provider, we understand the importance of building Women’s expertise and experience in leadership, not just for their careers but in all aspects of their lives” ACT/NSW GM Andrew Hammond.
This year’s global IWD theme is ‘Changing Climates: Equality today for a sustainable tomorrow’ which has a wider campaign of Breaking the Bias #BreaktheBias. We believe there is always room for growth, and more importantly an ear to lend in order to help inform ways to improve equality and equity for all of us. Which is why we are continually invested in learning from our KJR women- as all all positive change starts with the sharing of experience.
We asked our KJR women to share what equality means to them and what advice they’d give to their younger selves/women up and coming in the industry. This is what they had to say…
I think speaking up [against bias] really helps because it shows that we aren’t scared to stand for what’s right and equal.
Equality for me means equal opportunities for both Men and Women. It means we just be fair to all individuals and award them as per their hard work
My advice to young women is to be bold and speak up, even if you may be worried.
Equality and equity for me: I want, need and expect to be able to have my say, to be listened to, and to be given the same opportunities as others. I expect to have my strengths, skills, experience and differences respected, and that is generally the case.
My advice is to foster relationships with people who are in a position to support you if you feel you need it. Talk to other people and soak up their knowledge and experience, and not just the other people doing the same job.
I have been lucky enough to not have had too much in the way of bias so far in my career. There was one instance int the past where a c-suite executive did not listen to women, so I think for me equality and equity is to be valued and respected by everyone in the team including males.
Advice for young women coming in would be to be confident in your work and involve/engage yourself in your team. Don’t underestimate yourself and be prepared to take on challenges.
Women have proven themselves and made their presence in every field, Army, Navy, IT, Politics, Fashion etc. It is always inspiring to see so many women acting as social influencers and women holding leadership positions. Women empowerment is very important in the industry.
My advice for young women would be, always have confidence in yourself. Girls have the strength and power to achieve anything they like and excel and always make sure that you are being heard well enough and never be afraid of any hurdles coming your way.
I have experienced a few biases in the past with some individuals but this has not disheartened me. Instead, I used this as fuel to do my best and to prove them wrong. I work not just with my brain and logic but with my heart, with passion, with compassion, with humour and with a style.
So let us continue this journey showing the world how wonderful women are.
Equality is my right. If I have the same responsibilities as that of my male counterpart then I expect the same respect, rewards, and support from my colleagues and my seniors. I should not feel the need of asking for it.
Believe in yourself and learn to fight back; take a stand, have a voice. Your mental barrier is the biggest barrier. Tell yourself that you don’t need anyone to tell you what you can do and what you can’t.