International Women in Engineering Day: How Companies Can Adapt Hiring Strategies to Attract Women

By Alice Duthie
on 23 June 2024

Wendy Zveglic, VP of Engineering at Fluent Commerce, shares her experiences as a woman in engineering.

My path to engineering was a bit different than most, starting less than six years ago. Having mastered many various roles and divisions in banking and finance, I was extremely curious about how technology could change things for the better, so I decided to change course. The field of engineering offers an incredibly rewarding space. It allows women to challenge the status quo, shape a better future, and make an impact across various industries and facets of life.

In Australia each year, over 18,000 students graduate from engineering; 18% are female, and shockingly, only 11% of working engineers in Australia are women. Organisations must invest in their people and foster inclusive cultures to address this gender disparity effectively. Introspection is key, urging organisations to question how inclusive they truly are. Often, the obstacles begin with the recruitment process itself. Women are often socialised to hold themselves back, doubting their abilities when confronted with requirements or job descriptions.

I personally experienced this challenge while building my engineering team at Salesforce, where I noticed that the applications primarily came from men with similar backgrounds.

Women in Engineering
ThisIsEngineering at Pexels

Driven by my determination to encourage more women to apply, I took action. Leveraging the power of technology, I utilised Textio in 2020 to revise the job description, making it more appealing and accessible to women. The results were astonishing—within a mere 72 hours, 20 talented women had applied, compared to 2 applicants using the previous JD. This experience reinforced the notion that companies must adapt their hiring strategies to attract and empower women.

By confronting unconscious bias, facilitating professional development opportunities, and reevaluating traditional norms, organisations can spearhead the change needed to create a more diverse and inclusive engineering landscape.

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