There's no denying that diversity in the technology sector has traditionally been a challenge for many businesses, with the most recent statistics stating that while companies are taking action to encourage women to join the industry, we're still facing a significant gender gap:
"According to Adeva IT, as of 2018, women held only 25% of all the jobs in the tech industry, despite women making up almost half of the total workforce. What’s worse, this number is lower than the percentage of tech jobs held by women back in the 1980s."
For the team at Hype & Dexter, diversity in all senses has always been an important focus of our company culture, as exemplified by one of our internal values: "Embrace Different".
As a part of that, we're proud to have a team that's made up of 48% amazing women who are passionate about the tech industry, ranging from copy and design creatives, to CRM and Data specialists.
As a company, we're committed to keeping it that way and doing our part to provide opportunities for those who are looking to take a similar path to the women here at H&D, and to provide some insights into what it's like to be a part of a fast-paced technology company. Hopefully, we'll inspire some budding technology gurus along the way and nurture that shared passion for all things tech and digital transformation.
The H&D Women in Tech Internship
Off the back of these goals, we're excited to launch our very first Women in Tech (WIT) internship. Here's a little bit of information around the program and the direction we're heading in.
The purpose of the WIT internship is to give high-achieving year 13 girls an opportunity to gain work experience in the technology space with guidance from female mentors who are thriving in the industry.
The long term goal of increasing the representation of women in the tech sector through participation in the program.
Four female high school leavers will be joining H&D team for a four week, paid period. During this time, they'll be accompanied by a mentor from the team who will be there every step of the way to answer questions, give insights, and help to cultivate a positive experience for the interns during their time at H&D.
Throughout the process, the interns will have a chance to try their hand across all areas of the business, shadow team members, and get a feel for 'a day in the life' of working in a tech company. They'll have full reign to follow their interests and gain experience in areas they'd potentially like to work in, in the future.
What will our interns walk away with?
First and foremost internship is a paid program. A lot of internships are typically unpaid which can sometimes be a barrier to entry. We appreciate the time everyone is putting into this, and we want to make sure they're reimbursed for it!
Beyond this, we hope to share with our Women in Tech interns:
- Valuable experience in the technology industry, with full control of choose either an area of interest to specialise in and shadow, or a more generalist 'feel for the industry' experience
- A written reference and CV experience to support their future career endeavours
- A professional photo to be used on CV and LinkedIn profiles
- One on one mentoring including daily stand-ups, weekly meetings to review progress, challenges and learnings from the week prior, followed by an end of internship review
- Career advice and guidance from peers in roles relevant to the aspirations of interns
The Woman Behind WIT
Romi Dexter’s entire career has been in the tech space. Over the last 20 years, she has worked with big brands and businesses like TVNZ, Microsoft, Telstra, Vodafone, Microsoft and NZME., as well as working with a number of excellent agencies, as well as spearheading her own businesses.
There’s always been gender-based discrimination in the tech industry and Romi has experienced her fair share. She’s never felt disadvantaged by being female but she has often found that she’s had to make more of an effort to be heard.
She believes that the tech industry is the future of New Zealand’s economy, but that we need greater diversity to really get ahead. Romi is incredibly passionate about tech and would like to see greater representation of women in the digital and technology spheres which is why she started Women in Tech at Hype & Dexter.