Only 15 percent of employees in an IT company are female – that is the reality in German IT firms according to BITKOM. Quite few, right? That is why in this edition of our blog series “Women in IT” I would like to talk about women in the IT sector in general and at Testbirds.
The percentage of women working in our company looks quite different: 34 % of our employees are female, with women in every department of the company. Yes, we even have female developers and a woman is the product owner of our beloved testing platform, “the Nest”. This means that the percentage of female employees is more than twice as high at Testbirds than it is in other German IT companies. Why is that the case? We think, there are a few reasons:
– Openness for good talent, regardless of demographic criteria: We only search for the best talent and a good fit in terms of personality (sharing our core values). Age, gender, nationality, sexual preferences – all these factors have no effect on our hiring process. You could say that this is quite normal as there are well defined anti-discrimination laws in Germany. In reality though, this is not the case. For example, it is not logical why many companies have such a low percentage of female employees when 50.2% of university graduates are female. Proving that there are definitely enough highly qualified women in the job market. By the way, we are a very diverse company with 12 nationalities and 20 languages. Thanks to this our offices are places of intercultural exchange. For this reason, our main spoken language is English.
– Our values: At Testbirds we live and work by four core values, which might also appeal to women, especially if they have experienced rigid hierarchies and exclusion at other companies. Those five values are communication, trust, responsibility, commitment and identification. It would take too long to explain them in detail in one blog post, but they include, for example, that we communicate openly and honestly, take responsibility and love our work.
– Flexibility: We offer home office and part-time working models allowing for employees searching for 20 hours per month to take care of their children or a four-day week for the person studying a part-time Master’s degree. We even have a (male) colleague in a senior position, who has been living in Leipzig, travelling to our headquarters in Munich every two weeks and will now move to Vienna for private reasons, still maintaining and thriving in their position. We not only expect flexibility from our employees, we also offer it to them. This might come in handy for women who are looking for a job that enables them to combine family and career.
The interesting thing about these reasons are that a company with values like this is an appealing workplace for all kinds of people, regardless of gender or other criteria that holds no weight in how good a person is at their job. So, if we want to have a workplace free of discrimination and a diverse company, maybe it is more important to look at current values and change them instead of regulating things with laws. That is not to say, there should not be laws against discrimination – we need them – but real change has to start in people’s minds.
If this blog post has inspired you to work at Testbirds, read our job offers. We are always searching for new birds.