Over 41% of young women say they are put off IT roles as they think they are too “boring”, according to new research.
The report from Nominet, produced for International Girls in ICT Day on 28 April, also shows that 35% of young women say IT careers are “too technical” and 28% say it would be “too hard” an industry to pursue.
Interestingly, the fact that tech is a male-dominated field – one of the issues that many critics think is keeping women out of tech – actually only bothered 16% of young women.
This might be that they are simply not encouraged enough at early, vital stages, rather than an innate disinterest in levelling the playing field. “Young women are strongly influenced by their school years, what they learn and the role models they look up to,” Parent Zone CEO Vicki Shotbolt told IT Pro.
“These influences can clearly make a difference to the choices they make later in life, so it’s paramount we do all we can now to ensure the success of our future IT workforce.”
The top three dream careers of 11-18-year-olds in the UK are all IT related: game developer (24.8%), app developer (13.2%) and web developer (12.6%). But once this is broken down into gender groups, results reveal that young women vastly prefer careers outside of ‘traditional’ tech.
Almost twice as many boys are interested in IT careers compared to their female peers, but there is still hope to get girls back into tech. Nominet’s study revealed that young people really want their schools to better support and nurture their interests in technology careers: 45% of 11-18-year-olds said they want better IT education to help them understand the benefits of an IT career.
Over a third of UK students also think schools should provide competent advisers to help them work out a path into their IT career of choice.