Gender Bias in Tech Profession Needs to be Addressed

Gender bias continues to be a problem in many sectors but the problem of gender bias is a significant issue in the technology industry.

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Our Los Angeles employment discrimination lawyers know that discrimination permeates many fields, particularly the tech industry.

In 2012, women held more than 57 percent of occupations that require a four-year degree. But they filled just 25 percent of jobs in what the Department of Labor defines as “computer and mathematical occupations.”

In addition, women make up less than 10 percent of venture capitalists, and they leave the tech industry at twice the rate men do. Female executives are few and far between.

Much of the gender discrimination in the tech field is less about overt bias than subtle prejudice.

That prejudice shows up in many aspects of the industry, from a lack of female mentors to the anti-tech messages females may receive in the popular media.

But much of the problem starts even before women enter the job market. Girls who join computer classes and other tech activities in high school and college are often socially isolated, an experience that leads many to reject similar career paths.

The disparate treatment carries over into the workplace, where women are viewed differently than men.

Performance evaluations for men, for example, are often longer and more detailed than they may be for women workers and often focus on effort and skill. In contrast, Evaluations for women focus on stereotyped female “strengths” such as teamwork and collaboration.

Gauging the scope of discrimination isn’t easy. The volume of discrimination complaints may reflect the health of the economy as much as the problem of gender bias: When the economy is good, workers tend to file fewer complaints because it’s easier for them to find new jobs.

Experts classify gender discrimination by three types: failure to hire, failure to promote and wrongful termination.

The fact that a company has more male than female employees is not necessarily discriminatory, but it could be if women are denied their workplace rights because of their sex.

That’s why it’s important for companies to have and document good reasons for promoting and firing workers. They should also make sure their recruiting policies are designed to attract qualified female candidates.

This is especially true for newer companies with young male staff. These men often use word of mouth to find candidates, and that can lead them to hire people who are just like them.

Since these companies are already staffed mostly by men, that means they will continue to be staffed by majority male employees.

The bad news about gender bias is that it’s firmly planted in the technology sector. The good news is that the solution to the problem requires innovation, and that’s what individuals in the technology industry are known for.

Fighting discrimination requires commitment from the top down, but it’s essential to the future of any company – and to the future of the technology industry as a whole.

Costa Mesa employment lawsuits can be filed with assistance from the Nassiri Law Group, practicing in Los Angeles, Riverside, and Orange County. Call 714-937-2020.

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