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Green flags in the tech industry: What women in tech should look for in their job search

Green flag

ARTICLE SUMMARY

Le Gammeltoft, Chief Communications Officer at Netcompanyexplores green flags for women to consider when selecting a tech company, particularly for those new to the industry. Highlighting indicators of a supportive and growth-oriented environment, Le aims to equip women with valuable insights to make informed career choices

Le Gammeltoft is currently Chief Communications Officer at international IT services firm Netcompany, with a background as an entrepreneur in the media industry.

green flags

Le has been fighting for many years to create greater diversity in entrepreneurship. In Denmark only one in four founders is a woman, and female founders receive less than 1.5% of all investment funds. Therefore, it felt natural for Le, as one of the few women in leadership in the Denmark’s technology industry, to continue to fight for more diversity and equality within STEM.

Le is an expert in driving transformation – digital and creative – and in her role as Netcompany’s CCO, Le has, among other things, launched partnerships with Astralis’ women’s team and built a game in Roblox focusing on engaging young girls with STEM learning. Both projects are initiated by Netcompany without commercial motives or demands and function as pure CSR projects.

Since entering the technology industry, I have had many discussions with women about their ambitions for their careers, as well as their concerns.

Throughout these conversations, I have consistently discovered a common thread. They often prioritise one thing above all when looking to join a new company: What is the culture and environment like?

It is no secret that the STEM field is male-dominated. This imbalance is not just a statistic; it is a reality that many women cannot help but be aware of daily. It’s not always easy being in the minority, especially if you find yourself in an old-fashioned organisation where systemic discrimination is still prevalent and gendered expectations stifle career opportunities. This is a challenge that all leaders in the technology industry must address.

When I began my role at Netcompany, I found myself in a unique position where I increasingly became a mentor to other women. Within a month of joining, a woman also considering a career in the company sought my advice. She expressed that she wanted to connect with another woman in the organisation who could reassure her that this was where she could thrive. This was just the beginning of a series of similar interactions, where I have had the opportunity to share my advice on tech industry green flags to look out for when job searching.

It all comes down to the importance of thorough due diligence. You must do proper research on the organisation that you are considering as your future workplace. This can help candidates make the most informed decisions they can and help ensure that they choose a workplace that aligns with their values and supports their career goals.

Here are some of the most important green flags and considerations that I would suggest job seekers take a closer look at:

  • Management Team: What is their gender distribution like? It is a major red flag if the company has no women in their executive team.
  • Board of Directors: Again, what is the gender distribution like here? It is a cause for concern if the company does not have any women on the board.
  • Project Portfolio: What projects have the company delivered? Can you see any of them aligning with your values? And do any of them go against your values?
  • External Communication: Are their communications overly corporate and product-focused, or are they human-centred and purpose-driven?
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Profile: Does the company initiate any projects for the greater good? Or do they focus mainly on profit?
  • Maternity Leave: What is their policy? Do they aim to provide gender equality here? And do they ensure flexible working that considers parents?
  • Gender Distribution: What’s the overall gender distribution like? Are women primarily employed in office/shared services roles or are they also in the core business?
  • Tenure: Are there women employees who have been at the company for a long time?
green flags

    The company you want to work for is one that you believe has an authentic and genuine commitment to diversity and inclusion – and that should be more than just words. It should be reflected in tangible actions. More businesses need to take the lead in projects that demonstrate their dedication to increasing the representation of women within the company, and initiatives that bring more women into the industry as a whole.

    Many IT companies try to excuse their lack of gender diversity by claiming that there is insufficient female talent available. But it is the responsibility of every business to help create that future talent.

    Partnerships can help achieve this, teaming up with everyone from educational institutions to female-led industry associations. It is essential to nurture these relationships alongside everyday operations to effectively drive long-term change, bridging the gender gap and creating a more inclusive environment for women.

    To everyone who is contemplating a job at a specific company – if you are still unsure whether it is a place where you can thrive, even after doing your research, then I highly recommend reaching out and talking to someone who works there. You do not have to do it alone.  

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