Reflecting On Lessons from #MoveTheDial’s Global Summit

MoveTheDial is a movement which is dedicated to increasing the participation and advancement of women in technology. Founded by Jodi Kovitz in January last year, the movement recently hosted its first Global Summit in Kovitz’s native Toronto.

By all accounts the Global Summit was a great success and was attended by over 800 executives and emerging tech leaders, in addition to 200 youngsters brought together by a deep connection to technology and innovation.

The agenda looked truly full of action, featuring talks from a range of “trailblazing speakers, top influencers, and decision makers”. Judging from the buzz after the event, it looks as though more people than ever before are inspired to remove barriers to participation within the tech ecosystem.

What can we take from the summit?

 

Tech Needs Better Female Representation at the Executive Level

The event underscored some stunning statistics about the tech world: just 6% of tech companies have a female CEO while just 13% of an average tech company’s executive team are women.

This gender disparity means that tech really misses out on diverse voices and the quality and intention of projects suffers for that. It’s also a very serious issue given that these disparities perpetuate themselves: without active involvement and advocacy for women in tech things are never likely to change much.

The problem isn’t restricted to the executive level: 76% of technical jobs are currently held by men and 95% of that workforce happens to be white. Technology touches all of our lives and without diverse representation we run the risk of producing technologies with a narrow focus.

 

Connect Is a Promising Tool to Build Meaningful Relationships

“Connect” was revealed at the event, a platform which helps people to build meaningful connections which can lead to great advice and tutoring. As Kovitz said:

“The champions in my life have been critical to my success, in terms of finding my way down the right path. There has never been a more important time to go out of your way to really meaningfully connect with and move the dial for other humans.”

The platform – which boasts great features like intelligent matching, goal setting, and a suite of tools to handle logistics – is currently in beta mode and it available for early access.

 

Tech Still Has a Long Way to Go

Bo Young Lee is the first-ever Chief Diversity and Inclusion Office at Uber. The company made the appointment following a difficult history with diversity and inclusion, underscored by a blog post written written last year by a former software engineer, Susan Fowler. The blog post played a role in the resignation of co-founder Travis Kalanick.

Bo is working to make Uber a more inclusive environment, spurred on by her experiences at business school where “everything I was taught in business school was created assuming the leader who is going to be sitting at the table is a 40-year old white, straight man.”

Working within Uber since March, she has worked on developing policy changes around caregiver inclusion which she hopes will bring about a more gender-balanced policy. She explained that announcements will be forthcoming.

Similar initiatives are springing up throughout the tech world. In fact, 60% of tech companies are actively working to eliminate these biases. But their success hinges upon buy-in from team members at every level of organizations.

 

Tech Recruitment Still Suffers from Unconscious Bias

The “Hire More Women In Tech” movement is rallying against monoculture and believes that more inclusive workplaces are healthier workplaces.

Underscoring the challenges that women in tech face, the initiative points highlights the unconscious bias that women face each day, such as being interrupted more regularly than men.This is why the initiative has put together some clear and actionable advice to assist hiring managers throughout the hiring process.

At Code Pilot we are passionate about leveling the playing field and having a developer’s abilities do that talking. Our platform helps to reduce unconscious bias by placing those abilities front and center above all else.

If you would like to learn more about our platform and how we help to reduce the effects of unconscious bias, visit our website today.