Content Design London

Diversity in the tech industry

Published 14 July 2022, by Rich Prowse in Content Process.

This blog post is in answer to the following tweet from Clara Greo:

Could you tell us about the diversity of your team, how you’re measuring it and what you’re doing to improve it?

We’re a small but mighty team that’s growing quickly. There are 6 permanent employees, and the senior content designer we’re recruiting for will be our seventh hire. The youngest team member is 32 years old. The oldest is 48. Our median age is 39. Thinking about our team, 67% identify as a woman and 33% identify as a man.

As CDL’s first ever content team lead, who’s gay, has a disability, and comes from a family without a tradition of attending further or higher education, I know we can do more. So can the industry, too.

The tech sector has a big problem regarding diversity. This applies to age, gender, disability, ethnicity, religion and belief, sexual orientation, and social-economic background.

While this is only our seventh hire, we’ve already learnt a lot.

We’ve asked for advice on how to recruit more diverse applicants. We’ve piloted different approaches to recruitment and techniques for promoting roles.

We’ve also reviewed our job descriptions, removing the need for degree-level education. We also send interview questions in advance.

Recently, we’ve revised our pay structure. We’re currently reviewing policies and benefits to make sure our culture supports the needs of a diverse team. For example, we’re looking at is how we support people through life events such as the menopause.

It’s important to Sarah, Mark, and myself that we create a culture that’s inclusive and diverse. We want to support employees both personally and professionally, so they can bring their whole selves to work every single day.

However, these changes will only go so far. We know there’s more work to do inside and out. One of the main problems is that too few children, teenagers, and young adults believe that a career in tech is for them. Even though we’re small we want to change that.

We’re currently exploring the idea of targeted outreach work with schools and colleges, as well as creating routes from further and higher education into roles at CDL. To do this, we need to grow the business. A bigger team gives us the space and time we need to properly support the development of someone just starting out in content design.

It’s a great start, but like I said at the beginning, we have a lot more work to do. I know we’ll make mistakes. But, we are open, willing to learn and change.

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