Gender Diversity in the Workplace

There’s been a lot of media attention recently to the lack of gender/ethnic balance in Silicon Valley tech companies. In response, all the big companies have published their own diversity reports, while pledging that “we must do better”.

At Tivix, we currently have 7 female employees out of 30 total. So, that's 23%, which puts us about on par with Facebook, Google, Twitter, etc. We'd like to have more gender balance, honestly.

Here are two important facts from our own experience:

  • When recruiting for formally-trained software engineers, the talent pool is still predominantly men. Approximately 75% of all Computer Science Master's Degree holders today are male. Assuming your hiring decisions are consistent, you'll always end up with a gender mix that matches the available pool. That's how statistics work. 
  • Three years ago Tivix was 100% male. All five of us. Since then we've hired seven amazing women and I think that every single employee would say that we are a higher-performing team (and a better workplace) today because we have better gender diversity.

The good news is that the talent pool is changing in the right direction. In the 1970's over 90% of graduates from engineering programs were men – while in 2014 UC Berkeley had their first Computer Science class that was majority female106 women and 104 men. That's a seismic shift. And a good one. 

I genuinely believe that mixed gender teams are higher performing teams. I think that in the years ahead it will be much easier for technology companies to achieve gender balance.

And that's a good thing.

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For further reading, see Kaitlin Walsh's excellent post about being a working mom in the technology world.