Don’t self-reject: step up in tech world

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By Eugenia Kessler, co-director at Coderio.

“Women are educated to be perfect and that affects our confidence when taking on new challenges”

Viviana Ottone, CTO at PassApp.

“Preventing prejudice is the first step to grow in technology”

Carla Grande Cámara, tribe tech lead at Banco Galicia.

“In IT the ability to solve problems is valued and learned in action”

Cintia González, product designer at Platzi.

In recent years, we have witnessed deep transformations in the world of work. From changes in the forms of hiring, through employee rewards, to the current realm of virtuality.

In terms of diversity, there have been important advances too. However, there are still sectors that, for different reasons, pose complications when accompanying this evolution.

In the technological field, for example, despite how much women workers’ conditions have improved today, they continue to face some obstacles that hinder their growth in the world of software development.

Historically, the universe of system engineering has been marked by male predominance: in the family, at the university, at the office, in senior management positions.

For women, making their way into this scenario implies dealing with factors deeply rooted such as the lack of vacancies, the impediments to accessing leadership positions, gender bias, salary gap, and, in many cases, discrimination and prejudice. 

The world we leave behind

In this context, women find social and cultural walls when they want to belong to a space that, statistically, seems to be exclusive to men.

According to an investigation by the organization Chicas en Tecnología (CeT) in Argentina, STEM careers have only 33% of female enrollment and in those linked to programming, the number is reduced to 16%.

Regarding the workforce, a study carried out by the Permanent Observatory of Software and Computer Services (OPSSI) in 2020 shows that women occupy 30% of jobs in the software industry in Argentina.

In the same way, an investigation by L’Oréal Foundation affirms that the women’s role in the field of science and technology is reduced to secondary positions and that only one in ten high-level positions is held by a woman. In Argentina, for example, women represent between 10% and 20% of the workforce of computer companies, according to data from Tiendanube.

It’s not about disinterest or lack of motivation. It’s the product of social and cultural conditioning that has influenced the way women have been educated for years.

Chatting with friends and colleagues, we confirmed that the stories are repeated, as well as the difficulties to overcome in this profession.

Viviana Ottone, CTO of PassApp with more than 20 years of experience in the field, observes that a recurring problem is that women are riskless: “Men are taught to be bold they are allowed to make mistakes, women feel they must be perfect and that affects our confidence when taking on new challenges.” And she explains that both genders suffer from mandates and it is a joint task to break down those prejudices.

Another important point is ignorance. Most people associate “technology” with “code” when, in reality, there is a wide range of possibilities within this universe. “It is necessary to broaden these concepts, adds Ottone, there are many areas of application and, like other professions, technology needs to be interdisciplinary with other sciences, such as the humanities, among others.”

“It’s not just about programming, says Cintia González, mentor in CeT and product designer in Platzi, there are lots of doors that lead to the tech world. In job interviews, most times, the challenges are more oriented to the resolution of problems rather than the technical knowledge because that’s something everyone can learn.” 

As in any profession, the true wealth is in the experience: “Women have the potential for everything that we propose, whether in programming languages, as well as management areas, project manager, scrum master, and positions more linked to negotiation and communication,” highlights González.

“For this reason, it is also essential to have soft skills, says Carla Grande Cámara, tribe tech lead at Banco Galicia, Bachelor of Business Administration and master in technological services and telecommunications: “It is as important the technological knowledge as the management and handling of teams.” 

Today, reducing the gender gap should be a priority in any company, especially in Startups and tech industries, where women must face many obstacles to achieve their personal and professional goals.

Fortunately, the sector is transforming and, under that spirit, Coderio was born in 2018 with a strong outlook focused on the defense of human rights, equity in its broadest sense, and respect for diversity and minorities.

The world to come

We are facing a turning point in which we must break with the paradigms known until now and get to work: learn from the past and focus on what can be done to reverse, improve and encourage the role of women in the field.

The first step is to generate initiatives that make this problem visible and contribute to the construction of an inclusive ecosystem with a gender perspective, supported by policies and practices that modify this reality.

“Believing in us, supporting ourselves and avoiding the prejudices that hold us back is the starting point to project and grow in technology,” says Grande Cámara. “The theory does not work, adds Ottone, our role must be to support the young people in their experience.”

In the same sense, for Cintia González, communities are big helpers: “CeT, MeT, Women who code, Chicas programando, among others, are the greatest references of today because they allow young women to enter into the world of technology, make contact with mentors and other girls in the same situation, with the same concerns, and promote access to jobs, events, experiences, as well as the exchange of knowledge.”

For this reason, as a woman and based on my role as co-director of a technology Startup, I believe that it is essential that the leadership areas assume an active role with the new generations: show them what sometimes is not seen and promote the discovery of one’s own path.

The world today

At Coderio we aim at equal opportunities for the entire team, without distinction of gender, age, culture, ethnicity, or social class, and we offer the same benefits, as well as carefully review the salaries and working conditions of each member.

These types of actions make Coderio the ideal environment to develop the profession. It is a flexible, warm, and cozy place, where all voices are heard.

And we are moving towards that goal! Today, 27% of our payroll is made up of talented women —an encouraging number considering the reports from the tech world.

Initiatives aimed at containment and representation are constantly being planned, such as the recent creation of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, a free and supportive space for the LGBTQIA+ community that seeks to strengthen ties and provide a place of safety and trust for its members.

Our Startup is one example among many companies that are committed to equal opportunities from a broad and diverse gender perspective, aimed to welcome women, trans and non-binary to join the enchanting field of technology.

Women have to step up and dare more, even at the risk of being wrong. They taught us that we have to be perfect and choose a career that suits us—it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way!

We can learn on the go, make mistakes, change our minds, and create our own paths. The IT world is vast and you may find what you are looking for. Doubt is a distraction from our potential!

With all this in mind, if you are thinking of expanding and challenging your knowledge in technology, at Coderio we are expecting you. Join a professional and diverse team, made up of talents from all over the world!

By Eugenia Kessler, co-director at Coderio

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    © 2023 coderio_ LLC. All rights reserved.