Course to boost women in tech roles launched

10 Nov 2023

Women's careers in tech are set to be given a boost thanks to the launch of the Mid-Level Accelerator (MLA) course by tech diversity champions Code First Girls this week. As it stands, women make up 19% of IT and 30% of web design professionals in Britain. However, only 5% of women hold leading roles in the sector. What's more, this number is set to fall further as global data reveals the number of women in tech leadership positions is on a downward trend.

The issue of gender

Women in tech roles remain less likely to gain early promotion than men. This is despite efforts to get more women into the industry. Just 52 women are promoted to manager for every 100 men at the same level in tech. This is in comparison to 86 women for every 100 men across all sectors. In addition, 50% of women in a tech role leave their job before they reach 35, with just 38% in the industry saying they have received training at work or upskilling opportunities.

Code First Girls

As such, Code First Girls is launching a new 12-week MLA course aimed at women with more than two years of experience in tech. The course will help them to move forward into mid-level Engineering or Developer roles and grant them opportunities to re-skill or acquire mid-level specialist tech skills. The course stemmed from focus groups and talks with a series of Code First Girls' partners, including NatWest, GCHQ, BAE Systems and Deloitte, who urged for a solution to help them retain, promote and develop their mid-level talent. Over the 12-week course, "candidates will develop technical professional skills across a full modern software development lifecycle, interspersed with 'future-tech' thinking and innovation, and further enhanced through career progression support," reports HR News.

What they're saying

Anna Brailsford, the CEO of Code First Girls, said of the course: "Getting women into tech is just the first hurdle – retaining them in the industry and ultimately seeing them lead it are the next ones. With many women coders leaving their roles due to no clear pathway or progression, the MLA course will be fundamental in helping businesses to retain the female tech talent they desperately need." She added: "And, with the UK continuing to suffer from an ever-growing skills gap, supporting women to progress in their careers will not only benefit the individuals but will ensure that our vital tech industry is able to grow and succeed." Whereas Hannah Williams, Head of Talent & Reward at Ordnance Survey, said: "We are excited about the MLA because it adds to our offer with a mid-career level route for women to accelerate their development. Traditionally this mid-career stage can be a real challenge for women so this new offer will help us respond to that."

Here's to the girls!