Australia loses female talent at every stage of the educational pipeline – from primary and secondary school to university and the workforce; this is particularly prevalent in the IT industry.
In 2019, only 28% of roles in the technology industry were filled by women. A concerning fact when it is proven, diverse teams lead to successful outcomes – for people, customers, community and business.
Oreta, a successful IT service provider, understands the need to shift gender percentages in the IT industry and is experiencing first-hand the need to achieve greater gender equality, with only 16% of its employees being women.
Saying that Oreta was co-founded by a female tech entrepreneur, Rajitha Rajasingham. As Director of Operations, Rajitha has worked in the industry for over 25 years and has seen the growing need to give young women the confidence to be trailblazers in the industry, to push through the barriers and pursue the same passion as their male counterparts.
Ms Rajasingham, the recipient of CRN’s inaugural ‘Women Leading Growth’ award, believes that “to gain more traction with young women, we need to encourage their curiosity in IT. We need to provide a means for them to build their skills and confidence and embrace their contributions to the industry.”
In 2020, Oreta plans to seize several opportunities to do its bit and help champion change and advocate gender parity within the IT industry.
To support International Women’s Day 2020, Oreta has provided headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation with funding to support several young women who are engaged in the headspace Career Mentoring program to help increase interest in IT, further develop their careers in the IT space and gain additional education in areas of their choice.
Oreta will give young women who are participating in the headspace Career Mentoring program the opportunity to gain industry-specific knowledge and explore the many aspects and benefits of IT through their studies.
“We aim to inspire young women who are passionate about IT to have better conversations and make more informed choices about their career pathways. We want to empower them to believe that they can achieve what they set their heart on”, said Ms Rajasingham.
The headspace mentoring program aims to help young people overcome challenges and employment barriers and support them through their transition into the workforce, by connecting not-for-profits, industry and young job seekers.
“This opportunity from Oreta will be beneficial in giving young women a head start in their IT careers. Participants engaged in the headspace Career Mentoring program will benefit from this support as they look towards developing their knowledge and interest in the IT space”, said Carolyn Watts, National Manager Vocational Programs at headspace.
Oreta is excited about what can be achieved by supporting this program and encourages other like-minded organisations in the IT industry to consider getting on board to inspire more young women to consider a career in IT.
For more information about headspace career mentoring, visit the headspace website: https://headspace.org.au/work-and-study/digital-industry-mentor-service/
Oreta also operates Girls IgnITe, a 5-day work experience program where Year 10 and 11 girls will have the opportunity to learn about all the facets of an IT company.