In recent years, there has been a concerning trend in the tech industry: while there are more women in tech jobs, helping to close the gender gap in tech, there is also a growing number of women leaving tech careers. This phenomenon has raised concerns and prompted research. One of the most recent explorations on the underlying factors driving women away from tech came from the Tech Talent Charter (TTC).
Top Insights from TTC Research: Why do women leave tech jobs and careers?
According to the TTC research, one in three women contemplated leaving their tech jobs in 2023. Shockingly, one in four women who departed tech roles in the past few years shifted to non-tech positions. But where are women in tech jobs moving to? These statistics paint a concerning picture for those who are committed to diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
Main reasons why women are leaving tech careers
It’s essential to investigate the reasons prompting women to quit their jobs in tech and move careers. These are some of the main factors influencing their departure from IT, according to the TTC research:
Fewer women in tech jobs make it to the top
Discontentment with career development emerged as a significant factor, impacting the decisions of four out of five women to leave their tech roles. Fewer female workers are making it to the top, as many businesses struggle to improve diversity levels amongst senior tech talent.
With the gender pay gap also sharpening focus on the progression of women in tech roles, many organisations are turning their attention to how to progress women internally. Despite this, the women we surveyed overwhelmingly agreed that the lack of career progression in their role was a factor in why they left.Tech Talent Chart (TCC) Research, 2023
The cost of living crisis and childcare are driving women away from tech
Caring commitments influence the decision to leave their careers in technology. However, according to the TTC survey, only 11.4% of the respondents admit actually quitting their tech jobs for this reason. Striking a balance between professional and personal responsibilities is evidently a delicate challenge.
The research also highlighted that pay dissatisfaction, often linked to the cost of living crisis and high childcare costs, is a prominent motivator for women to switch jobs. This is an opportunity for tech companies wanting to attract more women into leading positions.
Work-life balance is a priority for women in tech jobs
Work-life balance topped the list of reasons for women moving jobs in tech and leaving for non-tech jobs, often entangled with challenges in managing caring commitments. Flexible work arrangements have proved to be an essential tool for the attraction and retention of women in tech and digital.
How can companies prevent women from leaving their tech careers?
To reverse this concerning trend and promote greater gender diversity in tech, recruitment strategies must evolve. Companies can attract and retain women in tech by:
- Offering flexible work arrangements: Tech companies must embrace and promote flexible work schedules to accommodate diverse lifestyle needs. For instance, by providing flexible hours to accommodate time away during the school run hours, hybrid or remote working options, or offering shorter working weeks during school holiday periods.
- Embracing career development initiatives: Companies can invest in career development programs to address the discontent expressed by women in tech,
- Introducing equal pay and attractive benefits to ensure fair and competitive compensation, tackle the issue of pay dissatisfaction, and offer more flexibility and a better work-life balance.
- Adopting a supportive company culture that supports work-life balance and understands the challenges associated with caring commitments.
Conclusions on attracting, engaging and retaining women in tech jobs
Understanding and addressing the factors leading to the departure of women from tech jobs is essential to attracting, engaging, and retaining women in tech jobs. The data from the Tech Talent Charter offers an opportunity to improve by adopting these recommendations and embracing a truly inclusive environment that welcomes the valuable contributions of women in technology.
Having an experienced team of recruitment consultants by your side can be an asset when you are adopting hiring practices and strategies that promote diversity and inclusion. We conduct in-depth talent reviews tailored to your industry and specific needs, review your employer branding and improve your candidate journey. Get in touch with our team to learn more about becoming talent partners.