Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change...
March 8th marks International Women’s day; a day which has become a focal point in the movement for women’s rights and equality and a time to reflect on progress made and the changes still needed to achieve gender quality across the world.
Every year, the United Nations provides a campaign theme as a guide to inspire a change and fight for women’s future and this year’s theme is ‘Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change’; placing women and girls at the heart of efforts to achieve full gender quality.
This year’s theme is one close to Adeptis’ heart. Being Europe’s leading authority and trusted partner for hiring Cyber Security professionals, we have seen first-hand the gap in professional equality throughout the industry and the struggle to close it. As it stands, women represent only 20% of the Cyber Security workforce and whilst that has increased from 11% over the past five years, we are still a milestone away from true equality.
The efforts of women fighting for gender quality have always been part of our historical society and whilst the glass ceiling has been shattered by women before us, changing the infrastructure of society to make room for equality, we must continue to integrate new solutions and innovative approaches within STEM environments to create a gender responsive atmosphere.
The gender gap in Cyber was a hot topic in 2018, with companies implementing programmes to innovate and equalise the opportunity for women. A survey carried out by Kaspersky Labs found that 78% of young women rule out a career in cyber security, which monopolies the struggle to attract, advance and retain top female talent within businesses, and whilst this is a consequence of a number of factors, as an industry it’s important that we Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change.
What originally was, and still remains the main goal for International Women’s Day is full equality for women across the world and Adeptis’ is starting by closing the gender gap in Cyber. In 2017, Adeptis founded an events company called BrightSec; to bring together the brightest minds in Cyber Security. We hosted networking events that focused on Bridging the Gender Gap and how to attract, empower and retain women in STEM industries. It was important for us to acknowledge the skills gap, but also appreciate the strong female role models that have paved a way for women in this industry and understand how to empower, amplify and champion these innovative females.
The consequence of a male dominant industry can be significantly damaging to multiple generations worth of talent if companies aren’t putting in place sustainable infrastructure to support full equality; which means making sure women have a platform to be innovators, and not just consumers of innovation is absolutely critical moving forward.
Empowering female innovators is crucial in creating opportunities and building a more inclusive system in not only cyber, but every social system to shape an equal and innovative society for generations after us. So join the UN in “supporting women and girls who are breaking down barriers to create a better world for everyone”.