Today, people around the globe are celebrating International Women's Day (IWD). The observance of IWD recognises and honours the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women all around the world. The day stands as a focal point in the women's rights movement and works to bring attention to important issues surrounding women's equality and rights.
This year, the United Nations chosen theme is 'DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality', and we believe Tisski are in a perfect position to help tell this story.
We are honoured to support the women and girls who are championing the innovation and advancement of transformative technology and digital education. Below, we've spoken to some of the amazing women in our team, who shared their thoughts on the tech industry and gave some advice for girls and young women hoping to break into the sector.
My role entails working with customers to deliver a solution to a business need. I get to be involved with helping work out what that need is and how technology can help – and then the fun part, I get to do the building and creating before preparing the customer and delivering the new tool.
I can thank my high school guidance teacher for pushing me on the right path to a career in tech. When I submitted my ‘standard grade’ choices (what Scottish GCSEs were known as, at the time) he pulled me into the office and asked me why computing wasn’t on my list as I’d done well in it so far. My reason was that none of my friends were doing it! Luckily, he convinced me to change my choices before I left the room, and the rest is history.
I love the impact that tech can have on people’s lives and the ways we can use it to make things easier for people. And, nothing beats the satisfaction of getting something challenging to finally work!
I’d like to think that being a woman in the tech industry hasn’t ever hindered my career or opportunities, although I was once asked during an interview if it would be a problem working in an all-male team, which I can assume they wouldn’t have asked a male applicant. I’d say my main challenge has been my own confidence levels in driving that conversation to move my career forward. There is research that says, on average, a man will go for a new opportunity if he hits 60% of the job criteria, whereas a woman is only likely to go for it if she matches 100%. I would say that resonates with me personally.
When it comes to overcoming hurdles, I’d say I’m only having to tackle hurdles I’ve put in front of myself, but I’m gradually pushing myself to ‘own’ my skillset and shout about it when given the chance. I’d say coming from an ex-mining village in Scotland used to be a hurdle as I had to travel further for roles, however, the increase of home working after the COVID-19 pandemic has since removed that barrier.
I don’t think young women need to break into the tech sector as such – the industry is desperately looking for new people, and I’d say that we are here, ready and waiting for them. If we want to create tech products for everyone, we need everyone around that table when it’s getting made.
As a Dynamics 365 and Power Platform functional consultant, my job involves understanding a client’s business and processes to help them make best use of the Microsoft platform by automating, improving and streamlining their ways of working.
My dad inspired me to pursue a career in tech, from a young age he exposed me to computers and technology, making sure I always had access. I still remember school holidays trying to find my way around this thing called ‘the internet’ and trying to find webpages before the days of the search engines we have now. My love for technology just grew from there.
I love having the ability to make people’s jobs better with technology. It’s not only about trying to automate processes but about the end user and their experience, as well as enabling management of data without the need for end users to have to input thousands of different fields.
When my career first moved into the technology space there was an evident gap between the number of women versus men in the industry. However, one thing I can say is, they were all women I could look up to and it made me want to work even harder so I could become a role model for future women joining the industry. I don’t feel that being a woman in technology has directly impacted my career, but I do feel it motivates me to want to be better and hopefully one day become a role model for others.
I have had quite a few challenges in my career, some of which being quite demotivating, and some due to various discriminations. Despite all of this I don’t think I would be where I am today had it not been for this. Overcoming the challenges in your career helps to build you up and develop character.
The most memorable statement in my career was in my first more corporate role, where I was told: “The one thing you have in business is your name. What will people think when they hear your name?”. Of course, this statement is not meant to be taken literally but is instead about building your own brand and selling yourself. Although not specifically related to tech, this advice helped me get to where I am today.
As a Power Platform Senior Developer, my role at Tisski mainly involves the project phases from analysis to deployment, development being my favourite part.
Back in the day, when they introduced computer lessons in the school, it sparked an interest in me – especially when I was given the chance to create my own simple program using BASIC (Beginners' All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code). Along with most of my friends, when I opted for an engineering degree, I didn't have much of a clue what my day-to-day job would look like. Now, I don't have any regrets and I’m glad to have a role in the tech industry where I take delight in my work and contribute to the digital transformation of businesses.
At Tisski, we always have a positive vibe and there are plenty of opportunities to upskill and be better at what you do. The team’s work ethic is great here and the support has been invaluable. In all my previous jobs in the UK I was the only female Developer, until my role here at Tisski!
I think more women should choose careers in the tech industry. Thanks to more avenues being open to explore, and with technology being an enabler for change, the tech industry isn't going anywhere. I stand by the fact that women can do coding as a career and can be geeky too if they like. I encourage my girls to explore technology and hope they might consider pursuing a career in the IT world someday.