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A million more women are needed in IT to reach gender parity and combat the workforce problems linked to Brexit.
Nearly one million women need to be recruited into the UK tech sector so that it can reach gender parity and Brexit makes the need for action even more urgent, according to a new report.
The ‘A New Call to Arms’ report by the Inclusive Tech Alliance says the UK is likely to face an even greater skills crises post Brexit than anticipated if it fails to improve on the current levels of women working in the sector. This is because one in three people working in UK tech originate from other EU countries. This compares with around 33% of current employees who are from the EU.
The report states that there are currently 0.6 million unfilled tech vacancies and an existing gender deficit of 0.4 million women in the sector. An additional one million new vacancies are anticipated by 2020.
The analysis shows women in tech leadership in the fastest growing firms are significantly less likely than men to have studied a STEM-related subject at university and more likely to have been to private schools and a Russell Group university.
Inclusive Tech Alliance Members, including ASOS, Siemens and advertising agency Clear Channel, are calling for a
national campaign at the same scale of what was done in the Second World War to avoid a post Brexit skills crisis.
Samuel Kasumu, Director of Inclusive Boards who oversee ITA and member of the Prime Minister’s Race Disparity Advisory Board, said: “We have known for a long time now that there is a pipeline issue when it comes to encouraging women and girls to consider a career in tech. With the possibility of a post Brexit skills crisis; now is the time to focus minds and to tackle this challenge head on.”