Technology is becoming an increasingly important part of the Vancouver economy; according to the CBRE, Vancouver was the top city in North America for tech workforce growth over 2017 and 2018, growing by 30% and nearly 14,000 workers.
However, there are still challenges in making this prosperity available to everyone, as women account for only 18% of jobs in the tech industry and are on average paid less than their male counterparts in tech across Canada.
To come up with actionable solutions for the industry, the BC Tech Association launched its #WhatWorks series in October aiming to address these issues on women’s representation in tech.
Earlier this week, BC Tech released the official guide of #WhatWorks strategies at a wrap-up reception. Techcouver will be sharing some of the learnings online next week.
In the meantime, the BC Tech Association is putting the learnings into action and has pledged to double the number of women on their board.
The Star’s Cherise Seucharan reported yesterday that Jill Tipping of the BC Tech Association has promised that there would be “a minimum of 34 per cent women on our board” by their next annual general meeting in October 2020.
Seucharan’s investigation into gender parity on boards showed that the association had the lowest rate of women of the boards surveyed – only two of its 13 members, or 15.4 per cent at the time of publication. Allocadia’s Kristine Steuart and SAP’s Kirsten Sutton currently sit on the board.
“We were frankly embarrassed by that statistic when we saw it, and our immediate reaction around the board table was, ‘This is just unacceptable,’ ” Tipping told Star Vancouver.
Tipping announced the organization’s commitment to doubling the number of women on their board — now at 17 per cent following the organization’s late October board elections — at a Wednesday evening event for women in the technology industry.
Instead of trying to justify why the gender gap on the board of her organization was so low, Tipping decided to take the The Star’s report as an opportunity to improve, because “you can’t change what you don’t measure.”