Women already have a place in the history of technology and they continue to make their mark today. From Jean E. Sammet who developed the first computer language while working at IBM, to Radia Perlman, otherwise known as the ‘Mother of the Internet’ for inventing the spanning-tree protocol, the tech world is littered with forward-thinking female engineers and computer scientists.
As we mark International Women’s Day (IWD) 2016 it’s good to reflect on the progress that has been made at the very top of the tree. There are tech start-ups being founded by women across the globe and a survey of the eight largest tech companies in the world has shown that female tech positions are growing at a rate 238% faster than male tech roles. In recent years Meg Whitman (HP), Marissa Mayer (Yahoo) and Sheryl Sandberg (Facebook) have all blazed a trail for women by gaining top jobs in the industry.
This year, the theme for IWD is #PledgeForParity, encouraging us all to take positive steps to achieve gender parity, particularly in the workplace.
Certainly at iomart it is something we take seriously and we have worked hard to encourage young women to consider a career in cloud computing. We have a female COO and a woman heads up our development team, while in recent months we have welcomed a third female member to our VIP support team.
Danielle is just 19 years old. She joined us straight from college and has not looked back. So how did she get fired up about a career in tech and who inspired her along the way?
Danielle says it was her dad who inspired her career choice. He works for BT and was keen for her to understand how technology worked so he taught her to use it. “He encouraged me to build my own PC which I did at the age of 12,” she says. “It was very basic but it worked and it was an exciting thing for me to achieve.”
Unfortunately none of her female school friends shared her enthusiasm but Danielle was hooked. She studied computer science in fifth year and joined an apprenticeship programme before continuing on to college where she particularly enjoyed working on Infrastructure and Systems. The key to the job she does at iomart she says is “the challenges you get given every day.”
Danielle’s role in VIP support is as a monitoring technician. This means she monitors the software and hardware infrastructure for iomart’s customers as well as the company itself and works out the best way to solve issues as they crop up.
“My work is mentally challenging,” she explains. “I always have to be my best, thinking of new ways to solve problems, which means I’m always learning.
I’m part of a great team and it really doesn’t matter that I’m sometimes the only woman on shift. I’m surrounded by experts and we all support each other. I’d definitely encourage more girls to consider a career like mine.”
Ada Lovelace would be proud!
If you are interested in a career with iomart click here to find out more.