Nearly 3 in 4 women in tech have mulled leaving the field, signaling the industry still has a gender diversity problem
- A Capital One survey found that of women who stayed in technology jobs for at least 8 years, 73% had considered leaving due to limited opportunity to advance and unfair compensation.
- Women who left the tech industry altogether because of weak management and a lack of work-life balance contributed, the survey finds.
- Women - particularly underrepresented women of color - still face challenges within the tech sector.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
In 2018, just 26% of professional computing jobs were held by women. A new survey reveals why women leave the field - or contemplate doing so.
Capital One, the credit card company, surveyed 450 women in the US who currently work or have worked in technology fields like science, engineering, technology, and medicine. About half of respondents, or 250 of the total surveyed, stayed at least eight years, while the other half had left after at least three years on the job.Of those who had stayed eight years, 73% had considered leaving at some point, a survey of 450 female technologists found. The largest reason they considered leaving was for limited opportunity to advance to senior positions, followed by unfair compensation and little support from management.
For the women who left altogether, weak management and a lack of work-life balance contributed to the decision to leave, the survey found.
Not having enough other women in their companies also contributed to their departures: nearly half of women who left tech said they did not have female role models at their company, and nearly one-fourth said they did not have peer groups of other women.
Why tech still isn't a friendly place for women
Women - particularly underrepresented women of color - are still underrepresented in tech.
Many experts, like the American Association of University Women, attribute the lack of women representation in tech to stereotypes that men belong in computing industries.Once they get the tech industry, women face issues like pay disparities and sexual harassment more often than men. More than half of women in tech are paid less than men in similar positions, according to research by recruitment firm Hired.
Melinda Gates recently announced she would donate a stunning $1 billion toward ending gender inequality, including ways to increase gender diversity within technology. In an essay for TIME, Gates said the reason the tech industry talent pipelines work better for men is because they were "designed that way."
"We need to create new pathways into these industries that will open more entry points for women from all backgrounds," she wrote.