Category Archives: Diversity in Tech

Lets Break Barriers! Revolutionizing Recruitment to Empower Women In Tech

Written by Jenny Briant, Academy Operations Director at Ten10

Diversity has been a constant struggle for businesses, particularly in the tech industry and it comes simply just comes down to the lack of accessibility. We know that diverse teams can offer businesses so much, but outdated practices have made creating a diverse team challenging. Recruitment practices that aren’t always accommodating for women, particularly mothers, mean hiring teams are deterring a large population of potential talent.

Your job description is your first point of contact with a candidate. As such, it plays a central role in their perception of the company, the job role itself and the work environment. Bias language can seem subtle but makes an impression on a potential female candidate. I’ve previously seen words used such as ‘dominant’, ‘assertive’ or even something like ‘rockstar programmer’ – these can be so off-putting and daunting. These are words that are largely associated with men and often, albeit perhaps unintentionally, reflect traditional gender roles and stereotypes that can deter a female applicant.

Soft skills are increasingly becoming more important, especially in the tech industry; an industry that has historically placed emphasis on hard technical skills. One of the things I have recognised when I talk to female candidates is their hesitancy when they think they don’t have the right qualifications for a role despite clearly having demonstrable soft skills that are transferable to a lot of roles. Soft skills can mean anything from influencing others to emotional intelligence to resiliency, and all are hugely valuable to companies. And this is the case more so now than ever before as automation of technological skills increases, the need for soft skills, critical and creative thinking, as well as people management will become ever more important. There are also more roles in technology than ever before and roles beyond these super-technical skills.


How to change the workplace to accommodate them?

Imposter syndrome is a massive problem for women throughout the workforce, and disproportionality affects them, over their male colleagues. Essentially, imposter syndrome describes the feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt in your ability at your job. Mothers in particular, are more likely to experience this when returning to work, feeling that they need to work harder to prove themselves among their male counterparts, and the drive to prove they’re ‘unburdened’ by their childcare responsibilities.

Fortunately, the tech industry especially can now can very easily offer flexibility. Remote and hybrid working has been a game changer for many working mothers and gives them a chance to continue their careers as well as be there for their children. Despite this, frustratingly some companies still seem stuck on the rigid structure of the 8 hours a day, 5 days a week in the office. If businesses were open to changing work structures, this would accommodate a larger proportion of women.

Mentorship programmes are also vitally important to changing the narrative of women in the world of tech. Companies need to ensure they have a strong team of women who help to break down stereotypes and barriers that typically discourage women from a career in the tech They can inspire women to set higher career goals and pursue opportunities they might not have considered otherwise and offer real-life, practical advice based on their own experiences. Whether that’s through outreach programmes or internally, women need to see what is possible from inspiring role models who have been through the process.


Why is it important?

It seems ridiculous that in 2023, we still have an industry where women are severely underrepresented. I must acknowledge that this has changed a lot over the last 20 years or so and it is going in the right direction, but we can’t ever get complacent. At the moment, we aren’t tapping into and harnessing such a large proportion of potential talent, largely due to stereotypes and subliminal messaging throughout education and the workplace. Recruitment is the first hurdle, and we’re still often failing.

One of the things I have seen more times than I should have are women interviewing for a job and having strong feelings of doubt that they can’t do this. Given how disproportionately imposter syndrome affects women, my team and I have added a question at the end of our interview process for female applicants: “Do you think you can do this?” If the response is uncertain, we will spend time reviewing their CV and highlighting exactly why they would be a good fit and why their skills are important. Taking that time to reassure women that they have just as much right and capability to be in the tech arena as a man, has made a massive difference to our recruitment process and I like to think, is helping to move towards an equal opportunity in the industry. The UK has set its sight on becoming a ‘tech superpower’ but if we’re not opening our doors to women and providing the right opportunities, we simply won’t get there.


Making the Digital World Accessible for the Visually Impaired

Strive for Inclusion this National Blindness Awareness Month

In the United Kingdom, over 2 million people live with sight loss. This statistic is not simply a number but a reflection of individuals who face unique challenges in their daily lives. As we recognise October as National Blindness Awareness Month, it is crucial that we focus on making the digital world inclusive for the visually impaired community.

It is reported that 49% of visually impaired internet users feel excluded. A significant contributor online are website forms, which often are not designed to be accessible for them. This situation often leads to frustration, driving away users from accessing services or information.

The internet has become deeply integrated into everyday life. From staying connected to friends and family, performing work duties, accessing government resources, online shopping, entertainment and more, the web is intertwined in daily functions. That is why having accessible online platforms is critical to avoid disabling large segments of the population.

Businesses that take web accessibility seriously not only benefit users but also broaden the reach and ethics. It’s a win-win situation that promotes social purpose and company growth.


Screen Reader Address Validation

One company that is leading the charge in this aspect is Ideal Postcodes, which offers the only screen reader address finder solution on the market. Their innovative feature makes your forms compatible with voice over technology, which is commonly used by visually impaired internet users to navigate through digital content.


The screen reader address finder enables visually impaired users to complete online forms easily and independently. By simplifying this process, they are actively working to reduce the digital divide and promote inclusion. Ideal Postcodes’ solution is just one example that represents the kind of innovation that can improve web accessibility.


National Blindness Awareness Month

October is National Blindness Awareness Month, it’s crucial that we focus on inclusion. Achieving digital accessibility requires ongoing collaboration between policy makers, technology companies and the visually impaired community to understand user needs and identify areas for improvement.

By ensuring that technology is accessible, we can make a significant difference in the lives of over 2 million people in the UK while also serving as an example to the rest of the world.

Bias against race, age, and gender still preventing people return to STEM industries

Recruitment bias against race, age and gender continues to prevent STEM professionals who have had a career break return to employment, according to a new survey by STEM Returners.

The STEM Returners Index 2023, published in National Inclusion Week, showed women trying to return to the engineering industry after a career break are more likely to experience recruitment bias than men. Nearly a quarter (24%) of women said they felt they have personally experienced bias in recruitment processes due to their gender compared to nine percent of men.

In the survey, professionals from minority ethnic backgrounds represented a large proportion (39%) of candidates attempting to return to work in 2023. They were twice as likely as all other ethnic groups (34% vs average of 17%) to feel they have experienced bias in a recruitment process related to race or ethnicity.

Both men (29%) and women (25%) said they felt they have personally experienced bias in recruitment processes due to their age. As a result, 30% of returners say their personal confidence has been affected by the recruitment challenges they face, and their low confidence remains a barrier.

The Index asked more than 1,000 STEM professionals on a career break a range of questions to understand their experiences of trying to re-enter the STEM sector.

However, the latest results show some progress. In 2022, 29% of women said they felt bias due to their gender (5% more than this year) and overall, 38% of returners felt they had experienced bias in a recruitment process, compared to 33% this year. In 2022, 65% of participants said they found the process of getting back to work difficult or very difficult, but this year it was just over half (51%) of participants.


Natalie Desty, Founder and Director of STEM Returners, (pictured above) said that while progress should be celebrated, there was still a lot of work to be done, especially in helping returners who are residents in the UK and eligible to work, transfer their valuable skills and experience they acquired internationally.

She said: “For the first year since we launched the STEM Returners Index, we have seen that candidates are finding it slightly easier to return to work than they were this time last year. This is positive news but there are still too many people finding it an uphill battle.

“There are skills gaps across the engineering, tech and green jobs sectors – these gaps are growing, and the UK needs a diverse, agile and innovative STEM workforce more than ever. This talented and committed group of professionals are ready to help fill those roles. But they are still facing recruitment bias against their race, age, gender, and a perceived lack of experience.

“Women and professionals from minority ethnic backgrounds still face a significant disadvantage when attempting to return. People from minority ethnic backgrounds were 50% percent more likely than White British candidates to say they were finding the process of returning ‘very difficult’. This has to change. Additionally, we are seeing people who have moved to the UK from overseas are finding it difficult to transfer their international skills and experience to UK positions.

“Industry leaders need to do more to update recruitment practices and challenge unconscious bias to give returners a fair chance to rejoin the industry they are passionate about.”


In the survey, only a small proportion (12%) of career breakers stop working out of personal choice. Caring for others (both children and other family members) was the primary reason for a career break for 44% of respondents. Thirty-six per cent of women said they feel they have personally experienced bias in recruitment processes due to childcare responsibilities compared to eight per cent of men, according to the results.

Despite 86% of respondents having career breaks lasting less than five years, 38% of candidates felt they have received bias related to lack of recent experience, signalling there is a perception that a break leads to a deterioration of skills.


Helping professionals return

When asked if they would have preferred to return to work through a supported returners programme, 40% of returners said yes. Despite the clear need for structured return to work programmes, only 21% had seen one, and only 16% had returned to work via this route – underlining the need for more STEM employers to think seriously about diversifying their approach to recruitment.

Partnering with STEM organisations to run paid, short-term returner programmes, STEM Returners has supported and mentored more than 400 returners back into permanent roles. STEM Returners is also part of the STEM ReCharge programme, which is funded but the Government’s Equality Hub, which is delivering free of charge return to work career coaching, job skills training and sector specific upskilling and mentoring designed to support parents and carers in the midlands and the north of England.


Elizabeth Chikwanha-Mavengano

Elizabeth Chikwanha-Mavengano had 14 years of engineering experience in Zimbabwe and South Africa including studying for a masters in civil engineering, before moving to the UK in 2023. She applied for several structural engineering roles but found it challenging to get an interview. She discovered STEM Returners and completed a programme with Amey Consulting after which she accepted a permanent role as a project manager, based in Sheffield.

She said: “I had lots of mining experience but there are no mines in the UK; I had a senior role in South Africa but without the UK experience, companies did not want to employ me, so I opted for junior roles, but I wasn’t familiar with some of the software, so I didn’t get anywhere.  But the STEM Returners programme has boosted my confidence and made me realise that I have wide range of skills and experience that brings value to my employer. I had the opportunity to be accepted in the industry without viewing my previous experience as a drawback. The focus was on providing me the opportunity to showcase my abilities and values as a professional in a different role.”


You can download the report here:



Mentoring the Next Generation of Female Technology Leaders

Written by Samantha Sene, Channel Sales Leader, A10 Networks 

Technology surrounds us in today’s digitised age and as industry professionals, it is easy to assume that the path into the sector is clear. However, with women only representing 24% of security professionals worldwide, according to Forrester, more effort needs to be made to increase this ratio.

If we break this down further, PWC found that only 3% of females say a career in technology is their first choice, compared to 15% of males. Alongside this, 16% of females have had a career in technology suggested to them compared to 33% of their male counterparts. There is no denying that the situation is vastly better than the state of the industry fourty years ago and strong efforts are being made to equalise these disparities. However, it does highlight that we need to push harder.

This year’s International Women’s Day theme, ‘DigitalAll: Innovation and technology for gender equality’ is a great reminder of the work we all need to do to reach this goal. That is why I was keen to share my experience of working in the channel to inspire other women and suggest the practical steps needed to meet our collective objective.


Demystifying routes into the industry

I have been working in the channel for over twenty years, in both vendor and distribution roles and I am fortunate to have no regrets in my career choices. My first role, fresh out of university, was in a technology company as a sales support specialist which quickly transitioned into a full sales channel role. With a two-decade tenure under my belt, I have stayed in this industry because of its dynamic qualities, the ever-evolving nature of the work enabled by innovation, and the diverse career opportunities that it brings.

My experience with A10 Networks especially has proven a fantastic example of this innovative culture, exemplified through upcoming channel programmes and new product releases – it is always full speed ahead, which I find truly invigorating.


Finding inspiration through mentorship

Throughout this time, I have been fortunate enough to find strong mentors who have helped to guide and shape the professional I am today. One example that particularly stands out is in 2020 when I hired a business coach, recommended to me by my mentor at the time. She is truly inspiring as a three-time TEDx speaker who coached me in presenting and public speaking. As a member of the board of directors for Women in Cloud, a community-led economic development organisation for women entrepreneurs and professionals, she introduced me to a wide network where I was able to broaden my own connections within the industry.

When I reflect on my career, I find that mentoring has also become a true passion of mine. I mentor individuals both within my organisation, and outside of it, which I find is a great source of energy for me. I know that I am helping people, especially those new to the industry, by supporting and imparting my own knowledge, and most importantly by building their confidence as my mentors built mine.

One of my greatest pieces of advice for women entering the industry is to ask for help. Even the most adaptable and bright professionals can feel overwhelmed at the start of their career, and it is not a failure to admit this. It is hard to know where to start, whom to talk to and where to begin on the pathway to leadership. Female mentorship programmes work to inspire young candidates to aim high for themselves, allowing direct access to the women who have risen through the ranks before them. Programmes such as these are essential to drawing and retaining more women in the industry, by providing transparency into the female leadership makeup of an organisation.


Supporting the younger generation

Young people have had a lot to contend with as the subject of constant change and disruption over the past few years. Unsurprisingly, they have begun to show concern when thinking about their future. I am constantly amazed by the ambitious young people I see around me, and it always restates in my mind the importance of lifting other women up.

I act as the school governor for cybersecurity and safeguarding at my daughter’s school, so I see the first-hand efforts made by technology companies to engage with schools through careers fairs and presentations on apprenticeships. Equally, I believe we need to continue pushing for female leadership to be a larger focus of these initiatives, creating role models by bringing more women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) to work with the education industry, speaking at fairs and workshops. Explaining exactly what it is they do, how they do it, and what they did to get there – further demystifying the route into the industry.

In this industry we often talk about the digital skills gap and cyber security burnout, validating that the onus needs to be on encouraging apprenticeships, pushing for careers in STEM, and proving that the work we do with young people is incredibly vital.

Ultimately, I see International Women’s Day as a source of celebration. My network and the women around me have shaped me into the professional I am today, and I will strive to continue encouraging and supporting young professionals in this exciting industry.

Taking inspiration from women in the Tech industry

An interview with Mylène Lair, Marketer at ThreatQuotient

In the lead-up to International Women’s Day (IWD), which celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women, Mylène Lair, marketer, videographer and photographer at ThreatQuotient™ shares her views.

This year’s theme for IWD is DigitAll: Innovation and technology for gender equality aligning with the priority theme for the upcoming 67th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW-67), which promotes innovation, technological change, and education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls.  Here, Mylène talks about what inspired her to develop a career in the technology sector and she gives advice to women joining the profession. Mylène’s background is somewhat unusual, and she is therefore a role model for companies to think outside the box when hiring talent.

When asked what inspired her to work in the technology sector, Mylène admits that she doesn’t have a cyber security background and that she studied audio visual, subsequently creating her company in this area more than 15 years ago. In the last 5 years, Mylène has been creating videos for different publishers in cybersecurity, which was her introduction to the industry. She adds: “Eighteen months ago, I had the chance to join the marketing team at ThreatQuotient, as a contractor, initially with the remit to produce videos. The role has subsequently expanded into other areas of marketing and opened up a whole new world for me. I had to learn and understand a range of new concepts and I admit that I’m still discovering different aspects of the role, which is all very exciting.”

Over the course of her career Mylène says there are many women who have inspired her, but she adds: “I think that in every stage of life, there will be women who inspire. The key is to take a little bit from each person, as you harness and develop your own skills. But the most important aspect here is to be yourself, to live as you want and to trust your own judgement and to be confident.”

Mylène admits that she doesn’t really have any female mentors but considers herself lucky to work in a team with many women, each of whom bring different strengths to the table with complementary ways of working. She adds: “Each team member brings a different perspective, but I know I can count on the team to support me and help me move my career forward. In return, I try to do the same for them, by sharing my experience.”

In terms of any advice that Mylène has for women starting their careers in the industry, she says: “Go for it, trust yourself, trust your instinct. But don’t hesitate to ask your co-workers to explain things to you if you don’t understand.  When I started my career in cyber security, I didn’t know anything about the industry or about marketing, and English was my second language.  But thanks to the support of the team around me I’ve developed and learnt so much.”

Mylène doesn’t feel that she has faced any specific challenges or barriers as a woman in the sector but overall feels that it is a shame that International Women’s Day still exists today.  She adds: “The mentality must evolve, and I hope that soon this day will cease to exist as there should be more gender equality across the industry.”

IWD2023: Formula E Showcases Variety Of Female Roles Across The Abb FIA Formula E World Championship

As we celebrate International Women’s Day, motorsport isn’t traditionally known for it’s diversity.  However,  Formula E is keen to change that and is showcasing its newly released sustainability report, which highlights all the work they are doing around e-mobility and equity in sport and STEM.

Aligned to the FIA Girls on Track initiative that Formula E has been delivering alongside the FIA, Formula E is dedicated to raising not only the profile of female roles within motor sport, but their diversity and routes of entry.  Formula E employs a diverse number of women in various technical roles from across the all-electric championship, from General Counsel and Engineers to Tyre and Logistics Specialists.  Also, the FIA Girls on Track programme has hosted nearly 2,000 girls at track, with further Season 9 activations at Formula E races in São Paulo and Jakarta

Here, for IWD 2023, Formula E are highlighting the achievements of women already playing a key role in the success of the sport:

Leading Women in ABB FIA Formula E Racing Teams

Maserati MSG Racing – Anastasia Fowle, General Counsel

For over four years, Anastasia Fowle has been Maserati MSG Racing’s General Counsel, heading up all things legal for the Monegasque vice-world Champions including; driver contracts, complex partnership agreements and intellectual and property rights. In addition to her role with the team, and her partnership role at Shoosmiths LLP, Anastasia is also a director of the Formula 1 Grand Prix Drivers’ Association (“GPDA”). A true female trailblazer in motorsport, not only is Anastasia the first female director of the GPDA, she’s also the first non-F1 driver to hold this crucial role providing business, legal and strategic advice for the organisation.


DS Penske – Juliana Neto, Physiotherapist

Juliana is the physiotherapist to the DS PENSKE Formula E Team, having started her career in motor sport back in 2017. With experience in Formula E, Formula 3, DTM, WTCR, GT Championships and many 24-Hour endurance races, she’s responsible for ensuring the drivers can perform at their optimum levels when racing and training. Juliana first began working in sport back in 2010 with the Portuguese Athletic Federation and the Portuguese Olympic Committee, with further experience in environments like the UEFA Champions League and many international athletics championships. Since 2018, she’s also been responsible for the Bioperformance Center in the High Performance Center for Motor Sport in Madrid.


Jaguar TCS Racing – Lais Campelo S. F. Lima, Software and Data Engineer

Growing up in Brazil, Lais had a curiosity for the world of motorsport, inspired by drivers such as Senna, Barrichello, Massa and Fittipaldi, but never thought she would go on to have a career in the industry. Lais pursued her interests in technology and science, achieving a Masters in Physics and joining the Jaguar Land Rover graduate scheme. Now, in a role described as challenging and rewarding, Lais is immersed in motorsport as a Software and Data Engineer at Jaguar TCS Racing, delivering software applications, processing and analysing data, and extracting the best from the drivers and the cars.


NEOM McLaren Formula E Team – Georgina Yeomans, Communications Executive

Georgina Yeomans is the Communications Executive for NEOM McLaren Electric Racing, which spans both its Formula E and Extreme E teams. Her role spans a variety of responsibilities, including writing press releases, managing driver media and marking interviews and filming. Georgina has been gaining experience in the motorsport industry since the age of 16, with a background in journalism and communications. She first got experience in the industry through Girls on Track UK (previously Dare to be Different), which gave her the contacts and confidence to follow her passion. This began with work experience at Autosport, which led to communications work with Torque PR.


Envision Racing – Michelle Creighton, Composite Technician 

Michelle has a critical role within the team, as she ensures all the bodywork on both chassis’ is as pristine as possible. Whenever there is any damage to the floors or bodywork, it is her responsibility to fix the damaged area as neatly and as lightly as possible, keeping the car always looking perfect!  Despite not studying motorsport whilst at college, Michelle enjoyed the sport as a hobby with her Dad before going on to have a vast career in motorsport, working in WRC Mini, LMP, GT series and Formula One in the Composites Department. Michelle joined the team last November, which means there is now a female in every department at Envision Racing!


NIO 333 Racing – Marta de Pfaff Ganduxer, Tyre Performance Engineer

Marta studied MSc Motorsport Engineering at Oxford Brookes University, where she had the opportunity to work with the PBM Ducati Racing Team in the British Superbikes Championship. She has worked with various racing teams, including NIO 333 FE Team, playing a vital role in optimizing tyre performance. Marta is a strong advocate for gender equality in motorsports and encourages young girls interested in the industry to work hard and stay motivated. Marta’s expertise extends beyond motorsports, also having worked as an EV Powertrain Expert Engineer and has provided support for the development of electric vehicles for companies such as Honda, Toyota, and BMW.


Mahindra Racing – Andrea Ackroyd, Lead Performance Engineer

Andrea, the team’s Lead Performance Engineer, joined Mahindra Racing alongside Alexander Sims in Season 7. For two years she was his Performance Engineer, before she was promoted to her current role at the start of Season 9. With a love of physics and maths, Andrea studied engineering at university and was quickly attracted to the motorsport-related modules. She was fascinated by the hard work that goes on within a race team to achieve a competitive edge, and decided to pursue it as her career. To young women wanting a career in motorsport, she says: Don’t listen to the naysayers, keep your head held high, and stay curious.


Avalanche Andretti Formula E – Marissa Andretti, Vice President, Andretti Autosport and Managing Director, Andretti technologies

Marissa Andretti grew up around the sport, spending time and learning from her second family – a racing team. Andretti officially joined the family business in 2015 as a Client Relations Representative in Andretti Autosport’s INDYCAR program. With an interest in racing operations, Andretti assists in project management for the team’s branding-related operations whilst also serving as a Vice President within Andretti Autosport, overseeing the team’s philanthropic initiatives via The Michael Andretti Foundation. Additionally, Andretti has taken on the role of Managing Director for Andretti Technologies [ATEC], where she assists in developing strategy and project fruition, centralising departments across the team.


Leading Women in ABB FIA Formula E Partners

It isn’t only teams where women are carving out a successful career in Motorsport – Formula E also highlights some of the women playing a key role within partnerships of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship:


Allianz – Claudia Spagl, Global Partnerships Manager

Claudia Spagl is the Global Partnerships Manager at Allianz, and responsible for its Formula E partnership. Having started her career at the company’s communications agency where she was already workings on different motorsports topics and being responsible for the Extreme E partnership of Allianz,

she was really proud to then lead the Formula E account. Besides her passion for motorsports, the synergies between Allianz and Formula E is what makes her so excited about the partnership. As one of the world’s largest automotive insurers with a strong sustainability agenda, driving the transformation to e-mobility and supporting the dream of “clean air” is at the centre of her work.


ABB – Stephanie Wyss, Supplier Governance & Communication for ABB Formula E Partnership

Stefanie started her career at ABB as an assistant in the branding team in 2017. She always had a passion for cars and motorsport, and therefore leapt at the opportunity to be part of the ABB Formula E Partnership team, taking on the role of Supplier Governance & Communication in October 2019. Her dedication, attitude and organisational skills meant she soon took on responsibility of managing all merchandise, teamwear and logistics, playing a vital role in the success of the customer engagement program which is central to ABB’s title partnership with the Championship.


DHL – Manuela Gianni, Head of DHL Motorsport

Manuela Gianni’s experience in logistics has been driven by her passion for foreign languages and travel. She fluently speaks four languages and has been driven to the international atmosphere and opportunities that only a multinational company like DHL can offer. In her current role as Head of DHL Motorsport Italy she oversees the local Motorsport Team and manages the contract with Formula E Operations, for which DHL is founding and logistics partner since the launch of the Formula E Championship, heading a Team of professionals which are instrumental for delivering the Championship with strategic targets towards a sustainable logistics module.


Julius Baer – Selin Jost, Project Manager

Selin joined Julius Baer’s sponsorship team as a project manager in 2022, where she supports and focuses on sustainability and innovation-related partnerships, including Formula E, of which Julius Baer is the Global Founding Partner. Selin’s passion for sustainability began when working for the company’s sustainability team for three years where she co-led the development of the group’s climate strategy, before joining the partnerships teams. After graduating from the University of St. Gallen in 2017 with a degree in Management, Organization Studies, and Cultural Theory she enrolled on Julius Baer’s ‘graduate programme’, working on various assignments in Switzerland, Singapore and Hong Kong.


Hankook – Sujin Jang, Chief Engineer of Formula E Tire Development Project

As a dynamic individual who thrives on challenges and pushing boundaries, Sujin was always there whenever Hankook needed breakthroughs throughout her 18 years with the company. From new product launches, OE tires for high-end carmakers, to the start of motorsports, Sujin was there taking Hankook tires to a new level. Sujin was put in charge of compound development for Formula E tires and was the first female compound developer in the Hankook Tire Research & Development Center. Seeing the compounds Sujin developed in action and earning results through race performance always keeps her striving for more.


Formula E and the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship continues to champion diversity and equality in motorsport – and we hope next year’s list of women leading the field off track will be even longer!


About Formula E and the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship:

As the world’s first all-electric FIA World Championship and the only sport certified Net Zero Carbon since inception (achieved in line with the 2020 definition), the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship brings dramatic racing to the heart of some of the world’s most iconic cities providing an elite motorsport platform for the world’s leading automotive manufacturers to accelerate electric vehicle innovation

The Formula E network of teams, manufacturers, partners, broadcasters, and host cities are united by a passion for the sport and belief in its potential to accelerate sustainable human progress and create a better future for people and planet.


Image caption: Marta de Pfaff Ganduxer

Winners celebrate at the TechWomen100 Awards 2022

Vanessa Vallely OBE calls on employers to redress ‘pitifully low’ 21% representation of women in tech with female tech talent pipeline clear to see

Over 100 extraordinary and inspiring women working in tech, came together to celebrate at the 2022 TechWomen100 Awards on Tuesday December 6th at the QEII Centre in London.

The TechWomen100 Awards, powered by Barclays, focus on the achievements of up-and-coming women currently working in tech below senior management level. By shining a light on the female tech talent pipeline, the Awards seek to encourage and support the next generation of female tech role models and leaders.

Now in their fifth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise the impact of individuals, companies and networks that are leading the way for future generations of tech talent. They form a key part of the WeAreTechWomen’s campaign to find and support 1,000 future female leaders in technology by 2025. So far, since 2015, the TechWomen100 awards have highlighted the achievements of 450 women.

This year’s Awards attracted over 1,000 entries from which a diverse panel of 20 independent industry judges identified a shortlist of 200. The public was then asked to show its support by voting for these incredible women. A second round of judging by the panel resulted in 100 winners being chosen alongside the overall winner of the public vote to for the 2022 TechWomen100 winners.


“I would like to extend huge congratulations to this year’s winners of the TechWomen100 Awards,” says Vanessa Vallely OBE, managing director, WeAreTechWomen. “While the Awards event was a great celebration of the female tech talent pipeline, the fact remains women represent only 21% of the tech industry which is pitifully low.

 “This year’s winners have proved beyond doubt that women can contribute significantly to tech roles bringing creativity, leadership, vision and commitment to this exciting field. As these women pay it forward, create communities, support each other and use their platforms to encourage more women and girls into the industry, I would call upon more employers to step up to support women in tech roles so that more top talent will be attracted to and retained by the sector.”


The TechWomen100 Awards 2022 are powered by Barclays and sponsored by Accenture, BAE Systems, Bank of America, BT, Clifford Chance, Credit Suisse, Funding Circle, Goldman Sachs, Huawei, Ipsos Mori, Morgan Stanley, Northern Trust, Oliver Wyman, PwC and Sky. In addition, Durham University and Google are the education partners for this year’s awards, honouring the female talent pipeline in technology.


“At Barclays, we’re focused on improving gender diversity through a workplace environment and culture that enables our female colleagues to fulfil their career aspirations,” says Craig Bright, Group Chief Information Officer, Barclays.  “As a leader in technology, this means really investing in how we attract, retain and develop our female tech talent. Recognising and celebrating female technologists is fundamental to closing the gender gap and building a diverse, equitable and inclusive culture across the industry,” he believes. “Barclays is committed to supporting and empowering women in tech to realise their full potential. We seek to promote, support and amplify the voices of those leading positive change and inspiring others, which is why we’re proud to be the headline sponsor for the 2022 TechWomen100 Awards.”


TechWomen100 Awards 2022 Winners


Champion of the Year – Gemma Willman, Head of Workforce Enablement, Natwest Group

Gemma was chosen for her passion in driving the gender agenda for women in technology

both internally and externally.


Company of the Year – Finastra

Finastra was chosen for its initiatives to elevate women in technology alongside its inclusive internal policies which help women to feel supported, both in life and their careers.


Network of the Year – Barclays Women in Technology (WIT)

Barclays was chosen for its incredible internal initiatives to support their women in tech.


Global Achievement Award – Amna Habiba, founder of BloomED

Just 16 years old, Amna was chosen for her outstanding efforts to teach 1000s of girls in Pakistan how to code.


Three additional awards include:

The Editor’s Choice, Lifetime Achievement and the Winner of the Public Vote.


Editor’s Choice Award – Flavilla Fongang, Founder of 3 Colours Rule

Flavilla was selected for her outstanding contribution towards building a pipeline of women in tech while simultaneously raising the profiles of black women in the tech industry.


Lifetime Achievement Award – Russ Shaw CBE, Founder of Tech London Advocates & Global

Tech Advocates

Russ was recognised for his outstanding support for women in tech.


Public Vote Winner – Ekta Soni, Wipro

Her outstanding work attracted just over 5,000 global votes.


Full details of the TechWomen100 Awards 2022 can be seen here


Martha Lane Fox on inclusivity in the tech sector, inertia in the House of Lords, and why she’s a ‘dot com dinosaur’

In WorkL’s Autumn Lecture, today Baroness Martha Lane Fox looks back on history, reflecting on the 1960’s and 70’s when women, working from home were programming the Concorde and working in deep tech, yet today there’s an astonishing absence of ‘gender balance’ in the sector.

Martha highlights the tech trailblazer, Dame Stephanie Shirley who employed women in building complex technologies and argues that today “we would be absolutely astonished if we had seen so many women engaged in those areas of technology, they are not associated right now, those deep tech areas of technology, with such a gender balance.”

In the lecture, Martha questions why, today, we are not using the insights and learning from the 1960’s and 70’s, to build a more inclusive and sustainable technology space for the future?

Having studied Ancient and Modern History at University, Martha looks back to the past to learn how to create a fairer and more inclusive future for the technology sector and our digital spaces.  Beginning the lecture, outlining how she was called a ‘dot com dinosaur’ in the street, Martha accepts her “whole career has been underpinned by technology right from the beginning”.

Martha co-founded and doteveryone, a think tank championing responsible tech for a fairer future.  Martha argues the Covid-19 pandemic shifted our relationship with technology but highlights not everyone was able to move seamlessly to technology during lockdowns.  Her “metropolitan bubble”, helped her “carry on as normal” when the world was locked down yet “only 50% of jobs could be done online, and a huge percentage of the people that weren’t able to work online.”

Martha goes on to stress that there is still a “huge job to do to include everybody in these enormous changes that have dominated so much of the working landscape over the last three years, but before that as well”.  Incredibly Martha cites that “half the world is still not using the internet, can you imagine what that felt like during this pandemic?”

Reflecting on her experience at the House of Lords during the pandemic Martha writes:

“If you had said to me that before the pandemic, we would be online doing committee meetings, we’d be voting and talking in the chamber, within 3 weeks of everything shutting down I would honestly have thought you were smoking an enormous spliff. But actually, that’s exactly what happened.  Parliament was able to digitise itself incredibly quickly and push through some of the inertia that perhaps had hit the organisation previously.”

WorkL’s Employee Experience report, published today, highlights the technology sector as being one of the happiest.  Since 2018 its score has risen from 73% to 87% in 2020.  Pre-pandemic to Lockdown-1m  scores jumped 7% (from 73% to 90% – a score no other industry has ever hit).

The industry has made progress in terms of women’s experience in the industry.  In 2018 WorkL data showed male employees felt more empowered and trusted in their jobs than women (60% in men vs 54% in women). In 2022, this gap stabilises as both men and women score 74%.  Women today feel more empowered in the technology industry.

Looking ahead to the future of the tech sector Martha emphasises the need to question where we get skills from and how we can help people from all kinds of communities to be part of that future that we are building.

For more information on the lecture and WorkL’s Employee Experience report, go to

TM Forum unveils world’s first industry-agreed score for diversity and inclusion to help win ‘war on talent’

More than 11,000 professionals and 180,000 data points help to establish first industry-agreed score to measure inclusion at every level of an organisation, in bid to cultivate innovation and encourage growth

TM Forum, the industry association driving digital transformation through collaboration, today unveils the launch of the world’s first comprehensive score aimed at improving company and industry-wide diversity and inclusion. The Inclusion and Diversity Score (IDS) is a multi-dimensional benchmarking tool co-created by TM Forum members to help digital service businesses win the ‘war on talent’ by retaining, nurturing and improving both talent and culture through greater diversity and inclusion.

In addition to providing a clear and benchmark-ready score – a single metric measuring both diversity and inclusion – the IDS methodology uses machine learning-based sentiment analysis to provide unique insights on factors affecting a sense of inclusion. For Diversity, the score measures how a company’s leadership compares to the diversity of the environment they operate in across a set of self-reported demographics including gender, LGBTQ+ and ethnic or racial diversity.

IDS was pioneered by TM Forum’s Inclusion and Diversity Council, chaired and led by CEO of Colt Technology Services Keri Gilder, and piloted by 15 companies, including Bain, BT, Colt, CSGI, Delta Partners, Infosys and Telia, who have participated in beta trials over the past eight months to define and refine the score, data collection and analysis methodology, while ensuring employee anonymity and data privacy.

“We know that our industry can do so much more when it comes to inclusion and diversity, and the results of the IDS score show how serious the challenge is. Individual companies can’t solve the issue alone, and as a sector, we need to be more attractive to the leading talent that will power us through our next phase of innovation and transformation”, said Keri Gilder, CEO, Colt Technology Services.

A sense of feeling included – defined by the IDS as a sense of belonging; of being treated fairly; of having an equal opportunity to succeed and being your whole self at work – has been shown through research by Bain & Company to positively correlate to employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS), well established as a key performance indicator for employee retention and engagement.

“The successful completion of the beta trials shows that the industry can adopt the score, and we can set a baseline and benchmark, which is essential to closing the knowledge to action gap around inclusion and diversity. I wholeheartedly encourage all leaders to join the IDS; to unite and make real and lasting change. Because together, we can create an inclusive environment and enable businesses, individuals and our industry to thrive.” added Gilder.

Insights discovered during the trials include the impact of affinity groups on a sense of inclusion, while interestingly, native language played a significant role in bolstering inclusivity—with participants identifying perceived language barriers between themselves and their corporate HQ as problematic.

Danielle Stekelenburg, a partner in Bain & Company’s Performance Improvement and Communications, Media & Entertainment practices, a key leader in development of the Inclusion and Diversity Score (IDS) explained: “Through our research, we were able to identify a set of common factors that impact a feeling of inclusion and explore the effects of various interventions. One factor that stood out as pain point for people not feeling included was ‘language’ – and this was acted on immediately. Language-based interventions included changing the language of job adverts, distributing CEO updates in local language and a partnership with Duolingo to offer free, mobile first language classes. Early indications show that these steps had a positive impact and these, along with a range of interventions, can be shared to provide an evidence-based solutions for businesses facing the same challenges. It’s great to see the real impact that IDS driving already.”

Having identified common pain points, companies engaged in the pilot are now co-creating a set of best practices and interventions to help each other take positive overcome the challenges IDS identifies.

Nik Willetts, CEO, TM Forum commented “Our industry is at a pivotal moment in its quest for growth, and recruiting, retraining and reskilling the right talent is now a critical issue for most companies. Despite clear evidence of the business benefits of building diverse, inclusive teams, as an industry our progress remains painfully slow. IDS is the first industry-agreed score of its kind to make it easier to measure, diagnose and benchmark these complex issues. By doing so, we hope to drive real change for the industry. Sincere thanks to all the companies and professionals who have participated so far, and in particular the instrumental leadership of Colt and Bain.”

With IDS pilot phase complete, scaling is key and TM Forum openly invites companies operating in the TMT sector to participate in the initiative. Widespread participation will enhance the benchmarking capacity the tool offers and enable continued collaboration to provide real answers to the challenges of recruitment, retention, and reskilling. Submissions of interest can be made at

Beyond the IDS, TM Forum members are now starting to collaborate on a broader set of talent challenges, including: how to attract new talent to the industry; best practices for reskilling; and a diagnostic tool to help CEOs and leadership teams understand their own transformation needs.  Beyond the IDS, TM Forum members are now collaborating on a broader set of talent challenges, including how to attract new talent to the industry; best practices for reskilling; and a leadership diagnostic tool to help CEOs and leadership teams understand their own transformation needs. The diagnostic tool, which will be piloted in the coming months, has been created with Russell Reynolds Associates, building on the already well-established TM Forum Digital Maturity Model and Russell Reynolds proven methodologies for leadership development.

About TM Forum

TM Forum is an association of member companies, which include 10 of the world’s top 10 network and communications providers and stretch across 180 countries. Our members tap into each other’s collective experiences and abilities to collaboratively solve complex industry-wide challenges, deploy new services, and create technology breakthroughs to accelerate change.

We help communications service providers (CSPs) and their suppliers to digitally transform and thrive in the digital era. We do this by providing an open, collaborative environment and practical support which enables CSPs and suppliers to rapidly transform their business operations, IT systems and ecosystems to capitalize on the opportunities presented in a rapidly evolving digital world. Follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.  Learn more at

Teen pioneers design the world’s next gen social media networks

Judgement-free, gender positive, no-filter platforms get thumbs up from young Digital Disruptors

A group of young Digital Disruptors tasked with creating a handful of new social media networks have plumped for judgement-free, gender positive, no filter platforms to build a more positive global theme for their futures.

The 15 young digital pioneers put their heads together in a mentored brainstorm session as part of this year’s annual Digital Disruptors’ programme, a three-day event hosted by digital marketers, the Tomorrow Group.

The youngsters, aged 14 to 16, all from south and south-east London, came up with fresh ideas for social media platforms which ranged from employment to fashion.


Tina Judic, co-founder and chairman of Tomorrow Group, organiser of Digital Disruptors, said: “This year’s young Digital Disruptors were utterly inspirational, inquisitive, innovative and incredibly hard-working. Their ideas for the next generation of social media networks show that they are determined for a more positive and friendly, less negative and fake view of the world than some platforms are renowned for today.

“It’s always a privilege to host this annual programme which helps young people, who may not know or believe what might be possible for them, to realise that there can be a very bright future ahead.”


Four ideas stood out for the panel of judges:


  • Itfitz – a fashion platform designed to help people overcome their fears of purchasing online and which focuses on providing a judgement-free, positive network for people to try on an augmented reality of clothes, shoes, hairstyles and nails.
  • Apply – professional network designed to minimise the gender gap and barriers created as a result of professional competitiveness and which places a higher priority on skills and attributes over experience and qualifications.
  • Interlink – a network to educate and develop young people’s skills, reduce procrastination and enable more school aged students to have their say and build confidence through lifestyle lessons.
  • BeWe – a no-filters, moderated network, helping young people to be who they are, in a safe but entertaining environment without the pressure of perfectionism, common in mainstream social media platforms.


Prizes from the House of Marley for standout contributions and performance were awarded by the judging panel, made up of  Tomorrow Group’s digital growth, marketing and data technology companies, Found, Disrupt, and Braidr, along with Digital Disruptor charity partners, The Hebe Foundation.


Dora Moldovan, co-founder and managing director of Braidr, one of the judges, said: “I was incredibly impressed by how much the young innovators have already learnt about advertising – from influencer to pay-per-click and social. They are social media natives, so I would have expected them to default to this, but they considered real-life scenarios and they crave human interaction.

“I’m also very proud of the Braidr team and our sister companies who took part through mentoring, delivering talks, judging and inspiring the next generation. The opportunity to give back to young people and share our enthusiasm for the digital sector was invaluable and thoroughly enjoyed by all. Credit is due to our chair and the Tomorrow Group for helping to nurture our youthful pioneers and we’re looking forward to doing it all again next year with the next generation.”


Amie Buhari, founder and CEO of The Hebe Foundation, said: “It’s been encouraging to have young people back, and face to face for Digital Disruptors, for the first time since the pandemic.

“In a society that often stunts creativity, this project enables our young people to imagine, to dream, and to create; putting their unique stamp on the things that matter to them. The quality of learning from the Tomorrow Group inspires our young people to be positive disruptors in the spaces they inhabit.”


The overall winner of Digital Disruptors 2022 is due to be announced in the next few weeks.

London-based Braidr, part of the Tomorrow Group, launched last year and has won some big name customers. The agency acts as an outsourced ‘chief data officer’ for customers, and is the all-important bridge between non-data expert IT and marketing teams.