Commentary & Perspective

4 Tips to Get Leadership Buy-In for ABI’s Top Companies

Have you ever looked around your workplace and wondered why you don’t see more women in technical roles? Women in technology are largely underrepresented, but it doesn’t have to stay that way. You have the power to speak up and demand change, and getting the ball rolling is simpler than you might think.

It all starts with taking basic measurements, and ABI’s Top Companies for Women Technologists is the only benchmarking program that tells you how your company’s diversity efforts stack up to your peers competing for the same talent in the technology industry.

If your company isn’t already taking part in Top Companies, it’s up to you to speak up and get leadership involved!

Your voice counts, and making it heard is vital to growing the number of women technologists in the industry. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you approach your manager or HR representative about taking part in the program.

  • First and foremost, figure out who the decision maker is for participating in Top Companies. A good place to start is to chat with your HR colleagues and ask if they’re familiar with Top Companies. Then find out who at your organization measures the relevant workforce data.
  • If your company already has established Women in Tech groups, connect with them to get buy-in for the program. Leaders are more likely to be receptive to the idea of participating in Top Companies if they see that vocal advocates for diversity are pushing for the program.
  • Send the image below to your leadership team, and explain that you want to see your company’s logo on it. Tell them that other women will look for your logo on this list when making career choices, and not participating in Top Companies is potentially driving away stellar candidates who are looking for diverse, inclusive workplaces.
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  • Send an email to your executives. Here’s a quick email template you can use to get started.

Dear [INSERT LEADER NAME],

As a woman technologist at [INSERT COMPANY NAME] I believe it’s important for our team to measure the representation of women technologists and for the organization to hold itself accountable to growing this number.

The best way to do this is to participate in the Anita Borg Institute’s Top Companies for Women Technologists. Submissions close on May 25.

For the past five years, women have held, on average, only 21 percent of technical roles in the U.S.

Where does [INSERT ORG NAME] stand in comparison? What are our recruitment, advancement and retention rates for entry level, mid-level, senior and executive women technologists? Determining these numbers is a critical first step towards growing the number of women technologists in our industry.

By participating in Top Companies, ABI will recognize our organization as committed to the mission of fostering diverse and inclusive workplaces. Why is this important? Because diversity drives innovation, and innovation is the cornerstone of any successful business.

Our industry peers are gaining recognition for participating in Top Companies, and women technologists exploring the next step in their career path are looking for the Top Companies badge, especially at the Grace Hopper Celebration, which hosts the industry’s largest career fair for women technologists.

I would love to help in any way I can to get [INSERT ORG] participating in Top Companies. I hope you share my enthusiasm on this important issue.

Sincerely,

[your name]

Have questions for the Top Companies team? Drop us a line at TopCompanies@anitaborg.org.

Image credit: WOCinTechChat