5 Top Tips for Women Considering a Career in Tech
Are you a woman considering a career in tech? Are you sometimes apprehensive about what being a woman in technology means? Women may still be in the minority in tech, with just 17% of the workforce being made up of women, however, in order to engineer change in the situation, more and more women need to break into the industry. A career in tech is an excellent choice, it can be well-paid, offer great opportunities for remote and flexible working, and with the pace of advancements in technology it can be an extremely rich and diverse industry to develop alongside. WomeninTech.co.uk have compiled 5 top tips to help women considering a career in technology: 1. Become a relentless learner Technology is always changing along with new industry trends, iterations and inventions. If you are considering a career in the tech industry then it is important to open as many doors as possible for yourself by always learning new skills, staying up to date with the latest tech trends and never losing that thirst for knowledge and development that sparked your interest in tech. Having an arsenal of skills and knowledge in your field will give you a competitive edge in the eyes of employers and organisations. Learning doesn’t have to mean always enrolling on courses, there are so many free resources out there to gain valuable insight, knowledge and skills such as books, podcasts, YouTube videos, and forums. 2. Network and connect Seeking out mentors and/or opportunities to network and connect with other women in tech is a really positive thing you can do for yourself to not only increase your understanding and picture of what it’s like to work in tech, but also it can be a way to discover new opportunities for work experience, or even a future referral for a job. Attending networking events or signing up to a mentorship programme will provide you with support from someone who has perhaps been in your shoes and can make you feel empowered and supported that you can do it too! Women empowering women is an important part of working to increase female representation in tech. 3. Seek out inspiring role models The power of role models to inspire and innovate is a great thing to utilise when considering a career in tech, especially if you are a woman and entering as a minority in the industry. Everyone will have different stories about how they entered their fields, what qualifications they gained, work experience they embarked on and advice for those at the early stage of their career journeys. Role models are powerful because they are examples of real people who have been in your situation and therefore they are extremely relatable. A way to discover role models is to read case studies because this is a quick and accessible way to feel like part of a growing community of women in tech. 4. The possibilities are endless! Research your options It’s really important to do as much research as possible into what sector of tech to go into as well as the different jobs available in the tech industry. Often there are misconceptions that working in tech is mostly coding or software developing, however, this is not the case. Tech covers a broad range of roles and there could be jobs out there in tech you hadn’t even thought possible. For example working in tech can mean working as a project manager, as an analyst, user experience guru, IT support and even tech sales to name but a few. From health tech and artificial intelligence to web design and aesthetics, the more you start looking into tech jobs, the more diverse the picture of working in tech becomes. 5. Take advantage of your unique position as a woman in tech More and more organisations are committing to fixing the issue of gender imbalance in tech, and this means that if you’re a woman considering a career in tech you are in a great position to put yourself out there and take advantage of the opportunities being created to attract more women into the industry! Technology has such a broad definition and because of that can often seem quite daunting, but it’s important to have confidence in your abilities to bring your talents to the industry and thrive. From specific business grants aimed at helping women in tech, to an ever growing list of employers committed to creating gender diverse tech teams, it’s an exciting time to be a woman considering a career in tech. For more information and career advice visit women in tech here Or call DP Connect on 02084665666
Open Banking Expo 2019
In the opening keynote by Jim Marous he stated that “change has never happened this fast, and will never happen this slowly again". A statement which is both terrifying and inspiring in equal measure. We are currently on the cusp of the fourth industrial revolution, which will disrupt almost every industry in every country and the banking and finance sector is right at its vanguard. Last week the second, annual Open Banking Expo explored the progress that has been made across the banking industry over the last 12 months in bringing open finance to the mass market. Two months after the final PSD2 compliance deadline we are left asking, "when will we know whether Open Banking has been successful"? Some argue that it will be when Open Banking is so ubiquitous that we refer to it simply as "banking". To reach this point Open Banking will need to have been adopted by the mass market, as contactless payments have been over the last few years. The tipping point in the adoption of contactless payment technology by the mass market was when the industry identified a successful use case. This moment came in 2015 when they utilised the technology to replace the Oyster Card on the London Underground. From this moment on, contactless payments became increasingly prevalent and, bolstered by improved consumer trust and the increase in the provision of contactless terminals, card payments overtook cash payments in 2018 and contactless payments now account for 50% of all debit card transactions. If this example tells us one key thing, it is that consumers will be driven to adopt new technology if it is faster, more convenient and more widely available than that which it is replacing. As a result, banks and fintech providers need to look at developing use cases where open banking technology can deliver a smooth, seamless, frictionless customer experience. As one of the speakers at the event put it, "giving back the gift of time through Open Banking". In order to do this effectively, providers will need to focus on how they can use their Data Analytics to develop an exceptional Customer Experience. The companies that offer the best Customer Experience will be the ones that will own and retain the consumer relationship. Gone are the days where banks are the de-facto holders of the consumer relationship. Banking is becoming more of a utility, and we are being given the freedom to switch our banking provider more quickly and efficiently than ever before. The great potential of Open Banking is that it will allow consumers to deconstruct banking into its component parts and services, and reimagine their own blend of providers using products such as Yolt which allow the individual to aggregate their different current accounts, savings accounts, lenders and pensions inside one app. The Open Banking Expo also focused on the disruptive fintech start-ups that are using Open Banking to improve financial inclusion. On the day of the event Nesta announced the 15 finalists of their Open Up Challenge 2020; a shortlist which included some inspiring examples of how this new technology can be used for the greater good. Some of these examples may well provide the use case needed to kickstart the mass adoption of Open Banking. As in the case of contactless payments, the increased adoption was supported by both improved consumer trust and the availability and effectiveness of contactless terminals. As a result, the success of Open Banking will require the CMA9 to improve both the availability and response time of their APIs. At present the availability is not yet at 99.9% level which is required and expected in other sectors, and the response times average around the 800 millisecond mark, whereas 200 is the level most complex web APIs aim to achieve. So as we can see, there is still some way to go around refining and improving the applications themselves to give a seamless and fluid user experience. However, given the progress that has been made over the last 12 months, the industry is heading in the right direction and it will be exciting to see how the sector develops and matures over the next 12 months. Here at DP Connect, we look forward to continuing our work with the OBIE and many other fintech providers in their realisation of bringing Open Banking into the mass market.