Partner Forum: Women Find Their Place in Technology

By IBM Systems Magazine, SHARE Partner

Women’s roles in technology are increasing in visibility as the industry grows. However, surveys show — and women in the field today say — there is room to grow and challenges to overcome, noting that gender sometimes holds them back. Despite this, women also celebrate successes in the workplace.

In the November/December IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe edition, we profile women — IBM clients, business partners and IBMers — who are pursuing careers in z Systems technology. These women range from those relatively new to the workforce to others more established in their careers, many of whom I’ve met personally at SHARE events and gotten to know and work with over the years.

They often find themselves as the only female in a room full of men, working as hard as, or harder than, men to stay ahead. They do this through studying and immersion of current and new technology, speaking confidently, networking and mentorships, and following what moves them, among other things.

Rosalind Radcliffe is an IBM Distinguished Engineer, a title that requires work and dedication. She advises women: "Don't let others determine what you can do. Ask for what you deserve. Don't just stand back; take your seat at the table.”

Read about these inspiring women in our special section, Women in Technology.

In IBM Systems Magazine’s Stop Run column, meet high school student Mary McIntosh who, along with her friends and the support of their adviser Seth Reichelson, founded the group ALLGirlsCode at their Orlando, Florida, area high school, which has expanded to a nearby high school.

The female-only organization for students interested in coding aims to introduce more girls to computer science by hosting and attending coding events and competitions, including the IBM Master the Mainframe contest, hackathons and review sessions to help students study for the Advanced Placement exam. These girls really are the future women in technology, and are looking for opportunities and respect in the field today.

In the Partner Point of View, MVS Solutions offers thought leadership from one of its female employees on attracting the best talent by encouraging more options for women, and how all can benefit from a diversified workforce. MVS feels it’s critical to understand the value of attracting more women into the profession. And with more women in high-profile positions, the author argues, the profession begins to look more attractive, encouraging more teenage girls to persevere through tough math and science classes. Making a workplace more hospitable for women through mentorship, flexibility and work-life balance options gives companies a competitive edge.

Through inclusion, encouragement, education, and fostering discussion and growth, women can gain their seat at the table and their voice in the workforce. And we all benefit by having a more well-rounded workplace.

Contact Managing Editor Valerie Dennis for any questions about IBM Systems Magazine.

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