Tuesday, Sep 03 2019

The Gender Diversity Issue in the Data Science Industry Remains Large

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The Gender Diversity Issue in the Data Science Industry Remains Large

Data science is essentially a fledgling field. As a result, many companies struggle to find the talent they need, causing them to focus purely on recruitment at-large. However, this mindset may be harming gender diversity in the candidate pools.

Gender diversity is often touted as a critical part of a company’s potential for success. When professionals from a variety of demographics come together, innovation and productivity are typically enhanced. But the current climate has put gender diversity on the backburner for many companies looking for data scientists. Instead, they focus on finding anyone who could potentially fill the role and don’t pay attention to actions that could hinder diversity initiatives.

However, the lack of gender diversity in the data science industry isn’t solely based on recruitment techniques. The overall talent pool is also dramatically male-dominated. While this does make gender diversity more challenging to obtain, it doesn’t mean that companies can take steps to potentially attract more female candidates.


Showcase Gender Diversity at Your Workplace

Even if you are struggling to find female candidates for your data science positions, you may not be having the same difficulty in other tech areas. If that is the case, make an effort to showcase those employees on various platforms. For example, you could have them create a professional profile for an employee page on your website or for use on social media.

By highlighting your commitment to gender diversity overall, you could become a more enticing employer to female data scientists. This may increase diversity in your candidate pool, making it easier to hire diverse teams.


Highlight Your Broader, Real-World Impact

Many professionals want to find their work meaningful. If you can highlight how your data science team is impacting customers in the real world, leading to far-reaching improvements for the community, or otherwise affecting the real world in a positive way, you might be viewed as a more appealing employer by female candidates.


Adjust Your Job Announcements

If you haven’t updated your job ads to be more inclusive, that could hinder your ability to attract female candidates. Highly masculine wording can deter women from applying, making them instinctively feel unwelcome.

When describing your ideal employee, avoid gendered terms. This includes not only he/she and him/her, but also descriptors like “rockstar.” Additionally, phrases like “dominate,” “tackle,” and “high-performance culture” can also be off-putting to women. In contrast, terminology like “passion for learning,” “lasting relationships,” and calling your workforce “our family” tends to attract female candidates in greater numbers.

Finally, make sure to keep your must-haves list as small as possible. Women often won’t apply if they don’t possess 100 percent of what’s listed, even if they could excel in the role. Limit the must-haves to skills that are genuinely needed from day one, and shift everything else into a “nice-to-have” list. You could also add a note that reads “or any combination of these skills,” which makes the requirements come off as less rigid.


Improve Gender Diversity in Your Workforce with the Help of The Armada Group

Ultimately, gender diversity is an issue in data science, and it may continue to be one for some time. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take steps to improve the gender diversity of your workplace. Consider using the tips above to see if you can attract more female data scientists when you are filling a role.

If you’d like to learn more, the team at The Armada Group can help. Contact usto go over your questions with one of our recruiters today and see how our diversity in hiring expertise can benefit you.