Executive Voices 3 mins read

On IWD, women challenge the status quo

International Women’s Day gives our female colleagues a chance to raise their hands and to #ChooseToChallenge.

Dr. Elke Frank Dr. Elke Frank

Dream big. That’s what Sarah al-Amiri did when she led the UAE’s Hope Probe into Mars’ orbit in the first-ever Arab interplanetary mission.

It’s also what seven ambitious women scientists and engineers did when they helped get NASA Perseverance to Mars to look for signs of life. 

These women choose to challenge stereotypes (women aren’t good at math and science), they challenge prejudice (women cannot handle pressure), and much more, to become part of the driving force behind humanity’s exploration of outer space.

The Mars missions are a good demonstration of how a diverse environment and inclusive corporate culture can generate better strategy, better risk management, and better outcomes.

So why is it still a challenge to achieve gender diversity, even in tech sectors, when the benefits are so clear? Globally, women are outnumbered by more than four to one in the technology workforce. It’s time to focus on building inclusive organizations, where the richness of our diversity is preserved and celebrated.

Today’s International Women’s Day provides a perfect opportunity for our female colleagues to raise their hands and to #ChooseToChallenge gender bias. 

IWD 2021 image

But, at Software AG diversity, equity and inclusion is not only focused the March 8th; it is an official and important part of our DNA every day. 

As a leader in tech, I can see how the history of software development has taught us lessons in diversity and inclusion. When people in an organization or nation are excluded, society as a whole is poorer for the practice and we lose out on the richness of multiple points of view and thought processes.

DE&I Ambassadors

So, to help better understand and leverage the vast diversity that exists across our organization, Software AG is establishing a group of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) Ambassadors who will champion key DE&I topics in their regions and ensure that everyone is heard, regardless of background or gender, especially when it comes to issues of equity and inclusion.

Our DE&I Ambassadors will be responsible for encouraging stronger connections between people from diverse groups, ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to be the best versions of themselves and to deliver on our purpose. Purpose is critical to our transformation. We aim to “connect technology and people for a smarter tomorrow.”

As I reflect on International Women’s Day I’m proud to say that women are a vibrant and essential part of our culture representing 30% of our workforce – well ahead of the average – and over a quarter of our managers are women as we start 2021.

There’s still more work to do, but all of us are aligned behind improving these figures at every turn. Today, International Women’s Day, is the time to put our hands in the air and say: “I choose to challenge.”

Find out how what our female influencers #ChooseToChallenge by watching the video below.