It’s been a bumper couple of weeks for the women in tech movement, led by an announcement from the UK government for a £2.4 million investment to encourage more girls into computing. Marking the largest national research effort to date to tackle the issue of gender disparity, the project will look at the many barriers preventing females from studying computer science at schools, such as absence of female role models and a lack of knowledge around opportunities.

Just days later, award-winning American actress and women empowerment activist Laura Dern spoke at Booking.com’s Women in Tech Code-a-Thon, where she declared a series of grants totalling $350,000 for the organisation to help fund STEM education for young women.

The UK tech industry is currently worth £184 billion, but only 17 per cent of tech staff are women. For a company of around 250 employees, that means just over 40 people are female. According to a survey commissioned by HP, 70 per cent of women aged 20-32 said that they would be interested in jobs in the tech sector, which poses the question: why aren’t they in it?

While the transparency and willingness to talk about the lack of women in tech as a real business issue has come on leaps and bounds this year, there is still a lack of clarity on what exactly we as an industry need to do to solve the problem.

Speaking at Dell Technologies World in Las Vegas this week, Chief Diversity Officer, Brian Reaves highlighted a worrying, but unsurprising stat – more than 50 per cent of high-performing career women who leave the workforce have trouble getting back in. Whether it’s to take care of children, further their education, or actually, just because they want to, this immediately leaves females on the back foot. At Dell, they have a programme to recruit those women, with Michael Dell adding, “when we are more inclusive, we get better results.”

With tech giants like Dell demonstrating that there is indeed method and momentum to improve the lack of gender diversity across the sector, it’s our responsibility to educate both men and women about unconscious bias and the negative impact it can have on an organisation.

AnitaB.org, the digital community for women in computing, believes in our modern economy, tech is more than an occupation, it’s a basic human right, and therefore excluding half of the population from contributing is not in the best interest of any business. With this in mind, the organisation has announced that they want to see 50/50 by 2025, calling it Tech Equity for Women.

With real change taking around a generation to achieve and every job in the future being based on tech, we better get moving if we want to see a shift! In an effort to be the change that we want to see, we recently started offering our clients in the UK free media training for female spokespeople, cementing our commitment to diversifying the tech sector.