In conjunction with International Women’s Day, which celebrates the economic, political and social achievements of women worldwide, independent research commissioned by specialist recruiter Robert Half suggests, Singaporean women working in the IT field have a growing opportunity to fill staff and leadership roles in the sector, thus helping overcome existing CIO challenges to find skilled professionals.
With technology advancements at the heart of many business transformation projects in Singapore, the IT hiring climate is very positive with companies expanding their IT headcount. The Singapore government projects that in 2017, the ICT industry will create further 15,000 jobs, with the number rising to 30,000 by 2020.
Drawing consensus amongst Singaporean CIOs around the challenges to find skilled IT talent, demand is outweighing supply and the war for technology talent in Singapore is heating up. The same CIOs also see growing opportunities for more women in IT roles, expecting higher percentage of leadership and staff roles will be held by women in future.
Matthieu Imbert-Bouchard, Managing Director Robert Half Singapore said: “While exponential growth in the technology sector is creating more job opportunities for qualified IT professionals, the sector is being confronted with severe skills shortages. This makes it all the more pertinent to promote IT as an attractive and rewarding career choice. This is especially true for women who are still today underrepresented in the sector, which highlights the potential in the workforce to tackle the skills gap.”
See: Attitudes of Women in Tech: Challenges to Leadership and Growth
While IT is traditionally seen as a male-dominated environment, Singaporean sentiment about the future of women in technology is gradually changing in the positive sense with more than one in four (26%) Singaporean CIOs forecasting that the number of women in IT staff and leadership roles will be on par with men.
More than half (52%) see women gaining equal ground with men for staff-level roles, yet predict men will continue to hold the majority of leadership roles and only 17 percent believe men will continue to dominate the IT sector in Singapore.
Encouraging and attaining gender diversity within the IT sector requires an encompassing approach, starting with positioning IT as an attractive education choice as well as career path for both men and women.
Also, in order to challenge the traditionally male-dominated IT environment and channel more women into technology teams, Singaporean companies need to encourage workplace diversity. The end result of this effort will result in more diverse skillsets across the IT sector and a wider IT talent pool which will in turn benefit business.
“A large number of technology leaders in Singapore are women, and as the IT industry continues to evolve, female IT professionals aspiring to leadership positions will have more opportunities available to them. Seizing those opportunities and positioning themselves for advancement and leadership roles will be crucial to further tackle the gender gap in IT,” Matthieu Imbert-Bouchard concludes.
Also read: Clearing Off Delusions about Women in Tech with Jessie Xia of ThoughtWorks’ Singapore