Global software consultancy firm ThoughtWorks connects its internal values with the attraction and retention of female talent. Its three key values are: being a sustainable business; championing software excellence; social and economic justice.
ThoughtWorks makes its decisions as an organisation based on these values, as well as attracting women to its tech-based roles and championing those within the organisation.
In 2013 and 2014, 50% of the organisation’s new graduate recruits were women. However, Ruth Gorman people specialist at ThoughtWorks, says: “We are still seeing far less women in more senior roles, so we constantly develop women into internal role models.”
ThoughtWorks encourages its 3,500 staff to share their experiences and success stories. For example, it offers a group for parents returning to work, which 27 employees (10%) currently attend. The group allows employees to informally share experiences and tips to help their colleagues balance childcare and work responsibilities. The organisation also runs Women in leadership development (WILD), a global leadership programme for its female staff.
These initiatives aim to eradicate gender stereotypes in the industry and in turn help to close the pay gap. Yet Gorman feels there is still much more that can be done. She says: “The reality of getting women into tech roles is that the gender imbalance still exists, so it’s crucial to show that it’s possible for women to thrive in a typically male-dominated sector.”