I will suggest that at least part of why no woman has ever applied is because your messaging sucks. This title is a terrible title that conveys that you choose to exclude women. This may not have been your intention, but that is what it signals. It sounds like you exclude them intentionally and you wrote this piece to justify it.
If you meant "We currently don't have a single female developer and we would like to see this change," well, you should have titled it that way.
People make decisions based as much on subtext, context, etc as on overt messaging. This is a UK company, but it sounds to my ear like it was written by someone who speaks English as a second language and doesn't grasp subtle differences that native speakers should grasp. I have no idea why that is.
But this article is rife with problematic language that suggests you don't want women developers and you feel entitled to exclude them. This is likely (at least part of) the reason not a single female developer has ever applied.
This piece is a complete own-goal.
> We don’t employ any female website developers at 10 Degrees. There’s one very simple reason for that: we’ve never had any women apply for our developer vacancies. Not one.
Not everyone who works for a company is necessarily a developer. The author is the company's business manager according to https://www.10degrees.uk/about/.
I guess I should have qualified as developer instead of employee, sorry about that.
For me to read an article and learn from it, I have to be able to trust the source and the author. I trust that they have a non agenda specific way of explaining a topic and educating the reader. I am sorry, but if I see such 'bait and switch' tactics to sucker people in under false pretences, then that trust is immediately broken and I will click elsewhere, which is what I did after reading the first paragraph of the article.
It's just clickbait. It might even be justified in this case, since people are somewhat tired of the topic and are set enough in their opinions, that they will judge any related article by its title rather than reading it. In this case the message may be important enough to trick you into reading it.
I don't know [wo]man, the cure might be worse then the ailment.
Does not follow.
They shouldn't hire someone because of their gender.
But they might be missing women from their pipeline because they aren't recruiting where women are looking for jobs.
Particularly, since this is apparently a small company, they might succeed in building a well-balanced team because they only need to find a few qualified women, compared to a larger organization that might need to hire hundreds of women to create an environment where there are enough women to prevent a "locker-room" atmosphere.
More likely, since they only have 3-4 developers on staff, they just don't have enough hiring to get women anyway, so there's not much point to the clickbaity title to an article that isn't actually about their hiring.
If your entire team is male, then either:
1. The best person for the job always just happens to be male.
2. You have to recognise that you already don't have the best possible people on your team. Logically, some of the best people are not male, and you don't have any of those, therefore some of your team must be not-the-best.
You've accidentally been hiring people just because they're male and reasonably capable. Remember how you were opposed to hiring people just because they're female and reasonably capable? Turns out you've been doing the same thing all along by accident.
I must confess in some ways to being jealous of the attention that females get in the industry. It worries me because I would like there to be as many camps and the like aimed at all children including my son and not just girls. Hopefully in time the gender imbalance will be corrected. People will probable hate me for saying that but I have a feeling I’m not alone in feeling like this.
Most companies want diversity and performance, but unfortunately that perfect candidate might not always apply for your job.
I can understand both perspectives of wanting to give extra incentive to hiring a diverse candidate to create a diverse culture, but also feeling like being born similar to those already at the company might put you at a disadvantage or make you feel like "one of many" rather than a "unique perspective".
Why do people jump to the conclusion that "specifically recruiting women" = "lowering standards". It is actually a logical fallacy.
Suppose you wanted turkeys at least 10kg in weight. Suppose that there are only wild turkeys, either white or gray, with a 90/10 population white/gray.
Well, since you need to find and catch turkeys, it turns out that catching white turkeys is easier just because they are easier to see! So you end up with 10 big fat white turkeys and no gray turkeys at all. Are gray turkeys slimmer on average? Worse? Different distribution? No. They are just harder to find.
After a while, all the big fat white turkeys are gone, because everyone is grabbing them up.
But hey there's whole population of big fat gray turkeys that you _can't even see_.
This is why it is rational to specifically recruit women.
Even from a purely self-interested point of view, it's an untapped market. It'd be stupid not to recruit women. In fact, not hiring women would mean that you eventually have to lower your standards _for men_.
A: we structure our hiring policies such that it's easier for women to get through the interview pipeline. I'd point out that we don't try to hire unqualified women, but we do make it such that a lot of qualified men don't make it. It's more about raising the bar for men - though plenty argue that this is still unfair.
I can understand tech companies' frustration. They're getting flak for not hiring many women, but people and news outlets rarely compare companies' diversity results with the diversity of tech as a whole. So it kicks off a competitive race where all companies are trying to have 40-60% higher than average representation of women. This is, by definition, impossible so companies end up resorting to changing the hiring pipeline.
>Are gray turkeys slimmer on average? Worse? Different distribution? No. They are just harder to find.
Who knows? Anyone who tries to find out are hung out to dry. Now I value my precious bodily fluids so I'll refrain from commenting, but I've heard there's been some science done somewhere, once or twice.
If your hiring pipeline is working, and you're successfully hiring qualified, capable candidates who all happen to be male, there would be absolutely no reason for you to change your practices which may result in you not finding the competent developers you need.
It is lowering standards if you have to transition from a working recruitment process to one which may not work, but ticks a diversity box.
On the other hand, there's the possibility that by trying to recruit women specifically, that their hiring process could improve. But who is going to take such a risk when they've already got a working process, and no solid argument that changing it will bring in better workers.
I'm not arguing that either, but even if I was, it wouldn't be a logical fallacy as much as it would be an empirically testable fact, and if I was wrong it would be a factual error, not a logical fallacy.
> It is lowering standards if you have to transition from a working recruitment process to one which may not work, but ticks a diversity box.
I don't see how that lowers standards, it might just be ineffective. The salient point being that lowering standards is about standards (i.e. "fatness of turkeys"), not how many people you hire (number of turkeys).
Now if you want to argue about whether specifically recruiting women would be _effective_, that's a different conversation, but my OP stands on logical grounds.
1.) You're not catching all the white turkeys. You are catching 9 white to 1 grey because that's the distribution of the population the turkeys wandering into your feed trap come from. Often your traps(small startup) will contain 10 white turkeys and zero grey turkeys when you check them.
2.) Women are not an untapped market.
The ratio in my studies 10 years ago was much, much better in math degree courses than engineering courses.
Then again, math is not development and they have little in common. (Speaking as female developer who always liked math.)
Similarly, if I'm evaluating a company and meet a group of ten people that seem like they have a lot in common with each other but less with me, I might see that as an opportunity to be unique or I might see that as isolating which could perpetuate the current homogeneous hiring.
"In countries that empower women, they are less likely to choose math and science professions.
it could have to do with the fact that women in countries with higher gender inequality are simply seeking the clearest possible path to financial freedom. And often, that path leads through stem professions.
The issue doesn’t appear to be girls’ aptitude for stem professions. In looking at test scores across 67 countries and regions, Stoet and Geary found that girls performed about as well or better than boys did on science in most countries, and in almost all countries, girls would have been capable of college-level science and math classes if they had enrolled in them.
But when it comes to their relative strengths, in almost all the countries—all except Romania and Lebanon—boys’ best subject was science, and girls’ was reading. (That is, even if an average girl was as good as an average boy at science, she was still likely to be even better at reading.) Across all countries, 24 percent of girls had science as their best subject, 25 percent of girls’ strength was math, and 51 percent excelled in reading. For boys, the percentages were 38 for science, 42 for math, and 20 for reading. And the more gender-equal the country, as measured by the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index, the larger this gap between boys and girls in having science as their best subject."
Importantly, pay gap between genders is bigger then in America. So much for women being attracted to money more due to desperation.
However, jobs are gender segregated a lot, probably much more. Tech is boy thing, clearly and openly. It is mostly that different things get qualified as "boyish tech" - for instance economics is mostly girly and seen as office administration job. Math is also much less likely to be perceived as "male thing". The attitude that girls don't have what it takes to learn math exists, but is less pronounced. I have heard it first time as adult, although I knew it would be weird for me to do something with physical technology. And I heard it most often from christian circles influenced by Evangelicals, for other people the stereotype was news.
There is a lot of push for boys to go to stem, including to tech occupations that don't earn much.
Edit: it is very odd to put reading and science into opposite. As if you would be interested in one and not in the other. There is not subject "science" in school either.
We have a Junior engineer opening at ConvertKit, and have had well over 100 extremely high quality candidates, over half of which are female.
It's not enough to just lay out your "we're hiring" sign and expect your team's diversity to magically increase. Get proactive with outbound or hire a hungry, ambitious Jr engineer.
This has got to be a tech hub problem of places like London and silicon valley. Maybe it is a start up problem.
In my years as a corporate developer in Texas women have been about 30-40% of the population at all skill levels. Women certainly haven't been the majority, but that doesn't mean women developers have been mysterious unicorns either.
What I have noticed is that the more experienced (old) the developer population gets in the corporate world, by average team member age, the less sex stratified it becomes.
A couple of comments here have mentioned that perhaps women don't apply to be in a small, all-male team because it's all male. And that by extension, diversity (in gender and race) might have its own value for attracting the very best developers, even if those that you hire to get there aren't the best candidates amongst their interview peers.
(I get that there are other values in diverse teams, that's not what I'm focussing on here though. I'm talking about attracting future hires.)
Part of that makes sense to me. Does anybody know if there's any data backing it up? Do pure diversity hires make for more attractive work environments for future candidates?
At least here in the US, it is actually illegal to either prefer females or discriminate against males in the hiring process (or vice versa), unless the sex is part of the role in question (i.e. hiring a person to play a female in a movie).
> We know from industry networking that there are many female web developers out there
Maybe their job adverts are inadvertently radiating “nope” signals?
Just from looking at their site, they don't actually seem to be hiring at all. There's a casual “hey, maybe contact us if you want a job!”, but that's only gonna attract the Dunning-Kruger Dudes. (Men are disproportionately conditioned to be over-confident, because boys are rewarded for being noisy and cheeky.)
So I suppose if this is how they do hiring, that would explain why they're only getting men applying for their development jobs.
I think I'm going to have to politely WTF? that, if you don't mind.
> Just from looking at their site, they don't actually seem to be hiring at all.
I couldn't see a clear Careers page on their site, which I found slightly surprising.
> There's a casual “hey, maybe contact us if you want a job!”,
On the About page there is a message like this. Literally it says “Looking for a new challenge? We are always on the lookout for likeminded individuals to join our growing team. If you've got the talent to help our mission and you share our values, please get in touch.”
That's a very general prompt for people who want a job to contact them. You need quite a high bar of self-confidence to apply in response such a general prompt.
> that's only gonna attract the Dunning-Kruger Dudes.
This is my cute nickname for people who believe they're great when in fact they're merely OK, in reference to the Dunning-Kruger effect. These people do have enough self-confidence to reply to the vague prompt. “Dudes” because I believe these people are disproportionately male:
> (Men are disproportionately conditioned to be over-confident, because boys are rewarded for being noisy and cheeky.)
This is my opinion. In my 2nd-hand experience, young boys are generally encouraged to be boisterous and even naughty, whereas young girls are expected to be quieter and more shy.
Boys are more likely to be confident in their own abilities than girls, even when the two have similar skill levels. This assertion comes from a small-scale experiment in [a TV show](https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09202jz), which is not proper science, and it's reasonable to reject this assertion as anecdote.
In any case, this is generalising and there are always counterexamples. But if any of this holds somewhat true, it may explain how the asymmetry arose.
Hopefully that answered your WTF!
The article makes a really solid point - invest in education and get women and minorities excited for the field instead of giving these groups a free pass to a job (see: Google) if you want to foster a healthy community and ensure a better future for everyone.
Exactly! Is it possible that the job advert, or something else about the company, was disproportionately attracting male applicants and putting off female applicants? (disproportionately, compared to the demographics of existing qualified developers) Would your company be capable of noticing?
> The article makes a really solid point - invest in education and get women and minorities excited for the field
Yes, this is definitely good! It's very easy to disclaim responsibility, because “the talent just isn't out there”. But this way, you cultivate more talent, and (if you put the work in) you get goodwill from everyone involved.
I don't know whether I am norm or not nor whether that has anything to do with them. They are small company, there is a lot of randomness in these things, rolling dice and all that. My probably biased observation is that unlike what stereotypes say, men in tech are more likely to be attracted to personally "just fun" feeling ads then women who more likely work in "soulless" medium to large sized companies. May be wrong ...
Also pro-tip: the title is flamebaity. I know that especially on this topic almost everything feels flamebaity, but this one makes people emotional and biased before they even read it.
This is highly unlikely to apply to most of geeks/developers.
My current company (not speaking as an official representative of them of course) is actively working to hire women, non-binary people and poc, especially to the devteam. We aren't there yet at 50% non-men; but we're actively trying.
We're sponsoring conferences, having people speak and doing a lot of active outreach. We also have great benefits and work is pretty flexible and understanding of family needs.
Creating a significantly higher demand for women developers is one way to help mitigate those causes and create more opportunity.
Is that actually true, though? And if you think it is, how do you know? Here's what I know: The percentage of women that take the AP computer science exam in high school is about the same as the percentage of female software engineers. This means that whatever is keeping women out is happening before this point in the funnel.
If the pool is 15% women (made up number, the actual number may differ), then it seems a reasonable expectation to have about 15% women devs on a team. But if the team is very small, we have to realize that the world is not perfectly homogenous, and some teams will have more than 15% and some less.
I'm all for making sure that groups aren't discriminated against in hiring, and if the overall hiring stats don't match the applicant pool, then that's a problem. But this constant pretending that women and men are not different is stupid. Men and women are deeply different biologically and that will reflect in social and cultural ways, which reflect in interests, and we can't force it to happen otherwise.
We should remove all barriers to fairness, encourage underprivileged groups, and educate, but we shouldn't try to force an equivalence that doesn't exist.
We need more girls in the field by cultivating different career ambitions.
That doesn't mean we shouldn't improve the other end of this as well, getting more women / girls into coding. Both are important.
You don't have to do anything (nor do you have to feel bad for using a normal hiring pipeline). You can choose to try to "fix" the gender-balance in tech thing [if you believe it's a problem], or not. There are millions of problems in the world, and it's up to you to pick and choose which ones you want to go out of your way to be proactive on.
How else do you expect to get gender parity? It should be important to specifically source and hire women.
If women aren't interested in the job, you've already got gender parity. Women are moral agents and can make decisions too, you know. This is also why no one is complaining about the lack of gender parity in sanitation services.
I personally don't see why software engineering seems to be constantly placed as the hallmark of jobs to work at, to the extent that if people don't want to do it, it's a problem. A lot of software engineering jobs are grueling, long-hour (or all-hour) jobs with questionable benefit to society. 'Hey, we made the ad company's ad tracking code 10% more pervasive! Wooo!' So you get a poor work-life balance in exchange for some slight premium on the pay you could make in a half a dozen related fields.
Meanwhile, the UI designer or business manager probably gets to go home at 5 PM, and nurses and teachers get to directly see and interact with people whose lives they are making noticeably better. Maybe the fact that more women don't want to be software engineers, is because women are running at a higher level than those of us who sign ourselves up for this stuff.
Which is to say, I don't see a problem with someone who wants to do a job doing it, but I don't see any reason we need to push people to do it.
I read this that you believe that an applicant's genitals or gender identity ought to be a positive qualification for employment. Am I reading you correctly/charitably?