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Study Reveals What Women Want From IT Jobs

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the big-fans-of-lan-parties dept.

Businesses 346

amigoro writes "Ever wonder why there are so few women in the IT workplace? It turns out that the typical recruiters sales pitch, which emphasizing job promotion and security, acts to keep women out of the information technology jobs. While about 30 percent indicated they valued careers that afforded them opportunities to perfect skills in technical areas, others said they wanted careers with managerial opportunities. In addition, there was little overlap among the women who reported that managers give up technical skills to develop management skills."

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346 comments

Not surprising (4, Funny)

h2_plus_O (976551) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259415)

Ever wonder why there are so few women in the IT workplace?
Nope. I work here, I look around, and I say this is further evidence that women in general have good judgment.

Re:Not surprising (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259441)

ur gay

Re:Not surprising (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259505)

You, on the other hand, are sexually secure, charming, and well spoken.

Re:Not surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259795)

I as manager, i want WOMEN, SEX, WOMEN, SEX, WOMEN, SEX, .. in the IT jobs.

The women are clever, work much and play much with babies.

In the IT jobs, the men see porn, the women don't see porn!

Like in Russia ... the women spy you (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259973)

The IT russian women were spying the connections of the boys seeing porn movies.

boy-with-fear: i'm seeing the Lolita movie.
IT women1: come in girl, watch!, this boy 13-year old is seeing the most PORNest movie of the world!
IT women2: hahaha!
IT women1: hahaha!
IT women2: fuck him! hahaha!

Re:Not surprising (4, Funny)

h2_plus_O (976551) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259813)

ur gay
Rest assured that if I was, I'd have much better taste in shoes.

what women don't want... (5, Funny)

neersign (956437) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259431)

what women don't want from IT jobs is being forced to hang out with all those nerd all day long. I'll post my study on this thesis tomorrow, I promise.

The reason that are so few women in IT (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259493)

Is that there is very little market for software that deals with periods, make-up, vacuuming and the like.

Re:The reason that are so few women in IT (1)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259561)

You don't get laid much, do you?

Re:The reason that are so few women in IT (4, Funny)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259675)

Don't get so snippy just because he forgot to enumerate making a delicious dinner and birthing babies.

Re:The reason that are so few women in IT (1)

Darkinspiration (901976) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259685)

This is slashdot, nobody get laid...ever. ;)

Re:The reason that are so few women in IT (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260097)

oh, slashdotters get laid, but if straight not by any IT coworkers. For sure IT is the way not to meet women.

Hmmm... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259499)

...others said they wanted careers with managerial opportunities.
So, in other words, they don't want to work in IT.

Re:Hmmm... (5, Interesting)

Pentavirate (867026) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259619)

While women represent almost 60 percent of the workforce....

I question this number. Does it seem fishy?

also...

Human-resources personnel need to recognize that women have diverse values and motivations throughout their careers and tailor hiring and retention practices to fit those needs

Since when do employers tailor jobs for their employees? Don't employers post what they want the person to do and the job seekers decide whether they want to apply or not? Or is this only if employers "need" to employ more women in their IT departments.

Re:Hmmm... (2, Interesting)

Pentavirate (867026) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259707)

Something else. What does this quote have to do with what the "typical" woman wants in an IT field. This person seems to be an outlier with some serious issues:

"[Working in IT] is a place where I can get control that a child from a dysfunctional family wants," a 49 year-old IT operations architect, who had a traumatic childhood said. "I can make order. I can put those damn cards in the right order. I can get the syntax perfect. I can run it and have it compile cleanly. There are all of these tidiness control things that are so beautiful about programming and a computer program will not betray you. It does the same damn thing every time"

Re:Hmmm... (3, Funny)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259841)

just wait till that woman is forced to make quick changes and fixes to someone else's huge pile of shitty code.

Not quite (2, Interesting)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260041)

They want to work here. They just want to be the Chief and not the Indian. Of course, in most places it is very competitive to become either lead or manager. So if they do not want to put in their time, it is not surprising that they are leaving for different jobs or family life.

Overlapping women? (4, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259503)

Can we see some pics?

Seriously though, did that line make sense to anyone else?

Re:Overlapping women? (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259615)

It's a sentence fragment.

"In addition, there was little overlap (between) the women who reported that managers give up technical skills to develop management skills"..."and women who reported that managers don't give up technical skills to develop management skills." Or something.

You can't have overlap with just one group. That's just lap.

Re:Overlapping women? (2, Insightful)

metlin (258108) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259691)

See, which is weird because a lot of management folks that I work with are all big-time geeks (theoretical physicists from Bell Labs, just as an example). Do they do physics now? Of course not, but that does not mean they don't do interesting, technical stuff.

For example, I know management folks with technical backgrounds who keep up to date on projects, who want to know what's going on and will even have a good technical debate with you.

At the end of the day, it's not all cut and dried. There are people who are interested in keeping themselves technically skilled and people who aren't. Just like everything else.

I don't see why there needs to be a dichotomy.

Re:Overlapping women? (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259777)

Like most dichotomies, it's a false one.

People are too prone to thinking in black in white, and that sort of thinking leads them to create articles like "Study reveals what women want in IT jobs" like it's possible to isolate the two or three factors that are preventing hordes of women from descending on the IT profession.

Women and IT. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259507)

I'm apart of an Enterprise network support group and we have zero women involved.

IT isn't a place for the ladies. No one cares how you look as the others on my staff display in their daily attire. You can't get promoted by sleeping around. Management is married or single (and not by choice) so sleeping your way to the top isn't possible. And finally we, the men, tend not to backstab or sabbotage our co-workers as we often need backup and like maintaining a drama-free enviornment.

CAPTCHA: sleeps

Re:Women and IT. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259665)

And there's your RDI of misogyny, gentlemen...

Political correctness (0)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259683)

I was having an argument with someone in another thread about political correctness. They were basically saying that people who insist on it have a thin skin, and it should be okay to make sexist or racist jokes.

Thanks for helping me make my point: it's not okay, it isn't funny, you aren't joking. You really are trying to humiliate and keep them in their place. I'm sad for you that you are so insecure, so cut off from real human connections that you have to lash out that way.

Re:Political correctness (5, Insightful)

N3WBI3 (595976) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259951)

My mother raise seven kids and has watched 13 grandkids grow up. Her observation is this (and it hold true for IT) When two brothers get in a fight they punch each other and are playing nice in half an hour. When two Sisters get into a fight they never really have it out and just pick at each other for days! And as with anything there will be exceptions but on the macro I have watched my nieces and nephews and it is, by and large, true. I have worked in environments that are 90% female and some that are 90% male and the amount of back stabbing that goes on in a female environment is, in my completely unscientific experience, far greater. Would I hire a woman in IT? In a second because I am all about the person not the class but I wont tolerate for a second games, I have a deeper tolerance for two people yelling at each other during a meeting than quietly stewing so they can talk about it with other later. Political Correctness is a joke its not about thin skin its about manipulation to accomplish social ends..

Re:Political correctness (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19260049)

It IS okay and I am joking. That's "freedom" my friend. As for being funny, that's subjective and can understand how (captcha: grandpa) you don't find it funny. Why are people PC? Thin skin may be one reason. Another may be squash an attitude someone doesn't like.

You say "keep them in their place", your words, where in reality have a female staff member is fine, and no, I couldn't care less. Women in IT would be nice but I don't see it for a few *real* (and not as funny) reasons.

1. Math and science are studied more, based on averages, by men. Our brains are different and I'm fine with it. I like that we are different.
2. It's a very male dominated world. This of course makes it more difficult for women to get jobs and/or enjoy the work.
3. IT is boring unless small, meaningless challenges give you a rush. Women prefer relationships and working with people. Machines are not people.

I'm sure there are others but it doesn't matter.

Re:Women and IT. (1)

brunascle (994197) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259789)

... and we have zero women involved... You can't get promoted by sleeping around...
and with that kind of attitude you're not going to get any women. in more ways than one.

Of course... (1)

Das Auge (597142) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259511)

Yes, when we men get together for a monthly Skull & Bones IT meetings, we talk, and plan, on how to keep women out of the IT field.

Maybe most women don't want into the IT field for the same reason most men aren't too keen being nannies?

Re:Of course... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19260047)

Maybe most women don't want into the IT field for the same reason most men aren't too keen being nannies?
They don't want to change poo-poo diapers?

Women want one thing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259517)

A LARGE COCK PLOWING BETWEEN THEIR LEGS KNOCKING THEIR HEAD INTO THE HEADBOARD ON A NIGHTLY BASIS. AM I RIGHT OR AM I RIGHT.

# eply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads.
# Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said.
# Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about.
# Offtopic, Inflammatory, In# eply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads.
# Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said.
# Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about.
# Offtopic, Inflammatory, In

They want goatse! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259525)

Soooo..... (3, Insightful)

WED Fan (911325) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259533)

So, what they want is control NOW ?

While the rest of us toil to perfect our skills and move up the ladder, they want to be on top?

Damn, next they will want the damned TV remote, too.

Re:Soooo..... (4, Funny)

metlin (258108) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259621)

While the rest of us toil to perfect our skills and move up the ladder, they want to be on top?
Hey! There is nothing wrong in having a woman on top. It's quite enjoyable, let me assure you.

Re:Soooo..... (4, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259885)

And the view is a lot better.

100% Accurate (4, Funny)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259535)

This survey is 100% accurate, because they interviewed all 29 females currently working in IT jobs.

Re:100% Accurate (2, Funny)

travdaddy (527149) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259705)

This survey is 100% accurate, because they interviewed all 29 females currently working in IT jobs.

Actually they interviewed all 92 females. I'm not sure whether you didn't read the article or whether you inverted the numbers!

Re:100% Accurate (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259815)

I let all the women I employ work longer hours, so they can earn as much as the men do! There's equality for you!

Re:100% Accurate (1)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259873)

Almost right, but you got your numbers switched around.

according to a Penn State research study of 92 female IT practitioners.

Why? (5, Insightful)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259541)

Why do we care why women do or do not go into IT? I don't mean this as a flame, I'm just curious, because all the tools are there for women that are there for men. Computers cost as much for a woman as they do for a man, google searches work as well for women as for men, and O'Reilly books are as easily opened by women as by men. Why separate these studies on the lines of gender?

Re:Why? (3, Funny)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259629)

Because geeky IT guys are trying to figure out how to lure more women into their dungeons.

Re:Why? (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259729)

"Because geeky IT guys are trying to figure out how to lure more women into their dungeons."

Silence, you fool!
Oday otnay alktay aboutay hetay astermay lanpay hereway hosetay uriouscay reaturescay ancay earhay ouyay.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259763)

Why do we care why women do or do not go into IT?
Curiosity, perhaps?

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259865)

Men in many fields of pursuit have been trying to figure out for a long time how to legally roll back the women's lib movement, of course. In many fields of pursuit, men have tried many varied tactics to make those lines of work un-desirable to women. But computer geeks have had an extraordinary, singular success in this pursuit. Science wants to know why.

*grin*

Let the flame wars begin. . .

Re:Why? (3, Insightful)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259959)

Because it's clearly evidence of a hidden conspiracy somewhere to keep all women from doing the incredibly rewarding job that is IT.

I agree that math/science work is probably not put up to females as positively as it should be in their early lives, but this is not a workplace issue, it's a social issue. By the time they get to the workforce, they're going to be doing whatever it is that they've been studying to do...I mean, is it that there is a massive force of women with technical degrees who aren't going into IT because the recruiting pitch isn't to their taste? That doesn't make any sense.

It's far more likely (and my college experience bears this out) that there are relatively few women who choose to get technical degrees, and thus they are not heavily represented in the IT workforce.

Re:Why? (0, Troll)

Coco Lopez (886067) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259983)

Everyone knows the reason women don't go into IT is because math is tough!.

what they want (0)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259551)

encourage women to work in formerly all male careers instead of the 1950's way and that's a start. quit assuming that women cant or dont want to go into computer fields because of its complexity- in short they're not idiots stop treating them that way. women deserve to have the same opportunity, encouragement and respect that their male peers do- that is what they want.

Re:what they want (1)

crow_t_robot (528562) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259647)

Judging by your user name I have little confidence you know anything about women...including what they want.

Re:what they want (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259713)

judging by your mod you dont say too many smart things yourself

Reason! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259553)

Government scientist say womens have brain size of squirrel.

Proof that nerds never learn grammar (1)

KrayzieKyd (906704) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259559)

Originally: "It turns out that the typical recruiters sales pitch, which emphasizing job promotion and security..." Actually: "It turns out that the typical recruiters sales pitch, which emphasizes job promotion and security..."

Proof that slashdotters never RTFA (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259703)

Originally: "It turns out that the typical recruiters sales pitch, which emphasizing job promotion and security..." Actually: "It turns out that the typical recruiters sales pitch, which emphasizes job promotion and security..."

Actually, it was scarier than poor grammar. It was poor cut and paste skills. The true original, FTFA:

The typical recruiters sales pitch emphasizing job promotion and security acts to keep women out of the information technology jobs, according to a Penn State research study of 92 female IT practitioners.

A little misleading on those numbers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259567)

Most female IT professionals I know could hardly be classified as women. They are more sort of asexual, overly pierced, obese rats that scurry around the office.

Lazy (1)

CriminalNerd (882826) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259571)


"...others said they wanted careers with managerial opportunities."

I do not think I am chauvinistic and/or sexist, but maybe it's just me, but somehow, that kind of says "We don't want to do real technical work or at least less of it than most." to me since they seem to care more about manager positions than actual technical jobs.

What do you guys/girls think?

Re:Lazy (2, Informative)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259739)

When I interview people for very technical programming jobs and the interviewee focuses too much on managerial opportunities it's definitely a red flag. A simple question about moving up the ladder is fine, of course. But if the intent is only to work up to management that's usually the sign of someone who's not going to enjoy the programming, and therefore not be very good at it.

Re:Lazy (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259835)

Preferring managerial positions over technical positions isn't necessarily lazy. Both positions might be easy or hard, depending partially on how good a job you do. They're really different kinds of work, requiring different skills, and people who enjoy one sort of work might not enjoy the other sort. It might be that people who prefer managerial work are recognizing something about their own strengths and weaknesses and choosing the job that's appropriate for them.

Of course, I'll acknowledge that some people just want to be "the boss" for the money and power it will give them. However, as someone who has had technical jobs and managerial jobs, I'd say my technical jobs were easier. I knew what I had to do and I could just come in, work on that, and go home.

Re:Lazy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259921)

That is an accurate assessment of managers and those who aspire to be managers.

Not lazy, more like not stoopid (1)

Anonymous Meoward (665631) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259923)

Seriously, my wife and I started out in software development together, and for a time even worked for the same large corporation. Now, basing my observations on a sample size of 1, I can say that while men tend to enjoy the narrowly-focused problem solving that programming requires at times, women simply get bored with it.

More accurately, they get bored with solving problem after problem, with no change in their prospects for advancement. For what it's worth, my wife moved to systems engineering, then product management (after getting her MBA). I wouldn't call her lazy.

But when she was "just a geek in a cube" (as she termed it), she was very tired of coding, of the long hours, of the hellish schedules, of the indifference of her co-workers, and of no chance to contribute more to her company than by whacking out even more code.

In short, most women in the software workforce know that there is no free lunch. They would, however, like to see a better selection of dishes for sale, since they're paying for that lunch with their time.

Re:Lazy (1)

ChibiOne (716763) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259963)

"...others said they wanted careers with managerial opportunities." ... somehow, that kind of says "We don't want to do real technical work or at least less of it than most." to me since they seem to care more about manager positions than actual technical jobs.


Disclaimer: I am a guy


I have a B.S. in Electrical Engineering, focus on Digital Electronic Systems. I entered the field because I loved technical stuff. I remember in my first year I couldn't wait to take Electrical Circuits or Computer Science or Networks. I was as nerd as they come.


Eight years later, my interests have changed a bit. I too have realized that I still like the technological aspects of a solution, but I wouldn't like to be working on the nuts and bolts of every system I design or support until I retire, and would like to move on to more "management-like" things. Does that make me any less worthy of respect?


Some people's professional interests change with time (and with other priorities). As long as you're a) happy with what you do and b) an honest, hard-working person that doesn't deceive or exploit others, no one should question your actions or choices.

Unexperienced managers (3, Insightful)

mnmn (145599) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259573)

Maybe I do not understand the reasoning or am taking it emotionally,

but I think it's a little unfair to have managers who have little or no experience in the respective field.

It's much easier to respect a manager who knows her stuff and understands the work well rather than a fresh-out-of-college MBA.

Re:Unexperienced managers (2, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260011)

I think it's true that unexperienced managers are often bad managers, and a fresh-out-of-college MBA with no experience is likely to be... well, kind of good-for-nothing until he/she gets some experience in something. Most kids, fresh out of college and with no experience, are kind of problematic.

However, I think it'd be a mistake to think that a manager should be required to be an experienced technical person in the respective field. Often, the skills of being the techie guru and the skills of managing people/projects/resources are different. Great tech people often have to be very focussed and detail oriented, while managers have to look at the big picture, schedule things, allocate resources, deal with people/politics, and be willing to let others deal with the details (and not micromanage).

Ideally, tech people and managerial-types would each do the work that the other didn't want to do. It often fails to work out that way.

Conclusion: Women are not homogenous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259577)

If I'm reading this right, they determined that not all women want the same things.

To which I say, duh. They're not all one person sharing a single brain. Were they seriously expecting them to all have the same goals?

Watch out now! (-1, Troll)

Mockylock (1087585) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259585)

They shouldn't be allowed near a computer unless it's in the kitchen, giving them recipies to bake me a pie!

;)

#irc.trooltalk.com (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259587)

claim that BSD is aM the aacounting

Managers managing managers (1)

mulvane (692631) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259613)

Not everyone can be a manager. Unless you of course consider jobs such as the trash man a trash MANAGEMENT expert.

Er... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259617)

Others said they wanted careers with managerial opportunities?

You mean in other words, they don't actually want an IT career at all?

Maybe most women just aren't really that interested in IT? Is it really so impossible that the different sexes might have different likes and dislikes?

It's likely not a natural thing, but an effect on the way females are brought up, it's also not necessarily be a bad thing. Surely the questions should be:

a) Are women generally happy with their careers?
b) If not, would moving to IT make them happy?

Do we really have so many women out there sat thing "God, I'm so unhappy, I wish I had a career in IT" that this is really a problem?

Men do not have diverse values (4, Insightful)

Jimmy King (828214) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259635)

Human-resources personnel need to recognize that women have diverse values and motivations throughout their careers and tailor hiring and retention practices to fit those needs

Unlike men, who apparently only have a single value and motivation for choosing their career.

Really, I don't get the whole article. They claim there's not many women in IT because recruiters tout the chances for promotion and job security. I have my doubts that anyone, male or female, goes "Man, this job has security and I likely won't be looking for work in 3 months? Well the hell with that. I don't want this job." As to the chances for promotion, does that not fit right in line with the women interviewed and quoted who say they want to move up into IT management?

And then of course there is a question that I always have. If there were few women in IT because they were being told they are too stupid to understand computer or something, I get how that would be a problem. If there's not many women in IT because the type of work and the rewards that IT jobs typically offer are not what many women want, though, then what's the big deal?

My head hurts (2, Interesting)

hcdejong (561314) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259639)

What on earth does In addition, there was little overlap among the women who reported that managers give up technical skills to develop management skills mean?

Why the push for women in IT? (1)

EraseEraseMe (167638) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259653)

Do they bring some kind of sixth sense to programming? Does their design layout match the office decor? Does the female mind somehow intuit complex operations?

Wouldn't a more important "study" reveal what QUALITY WORKERS want from IT jobs, not just women?

That said, I work in the marketing department, and I'm surrounded by attractive women :D

What women in the work place want? (3, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259661)

Me.

Thank you ladies, I'll be here all week!

Re:What women in the work place want? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259859)

"Thank you ladies, I'll be here all week!"

By yourself.

It's simple. (1)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259695)

They want to meet hot IT guys.

No seriously, that's what they after!

Ok, ok, I am joking. Like all other people they want money from their work.

Oh maybe they want to meet hot IT guys for money. Yeah, that's it.

What women want (4, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259711)

Who cares?!

Women should do what men do. When a man wants a job, he works and qualifies for it. He does what is expected by the employer. And if it doesn't work out, he does something else.

I don't think it's too much to expect women to play by the expectations of business people. You can twist and spin things any way you like, but the bottom line is that what we are talking about is business changing to meet the expectations of a specific subset of employable people. It just doesn't work quite that way. We're not talking about "challenged" [disabled] people unless you would like to reclassify women as being challenged or disabled in some way. What we're talking about is that somewhere between 45% and 55% of the general employable population who are making a decision about whether or not they want a job based on the criteria and expectations of employers for any given position... in IT or otherwise.

I think it's lovely that women want extras and allowances from their workplace. And hell yes, if an employer WANTS to provide those things then great! There's a match and life goes on happily ever after. I want extras and allowances too! I don't often get them, but that's not enough for me to not work for a living. But what are we talking about? Employers being compelled to provide for women as if they were some "special needs" group? To me, "special needs" people are mentally challenged, sensory challenged or mobility challenged people. If women by virtue of their gender can qualify under one of those categories, then they should probably be afforded special treatment. If not, then why are we always talking about this?!

Why aren't we talking about why there aren't more men doing jobs that are generally populated by women?

I hold there is an idea best identified as "different but equal." We shouldn't be concerned whether or not women want to be involved in a certain profession if that is their choice. If they want it, they will do what other people who want it do. If they would rather not do what it takes, then they shouldn't do the job... and that's largely why they don't I'm guessing.

Would *I* like to see more women in IT? **YES** I like smart women who can appreciate the things I appreciate. That's just about every geek's desire. It's rare, it's a pity, but it's life.

Re:What women want (1)

idesofmarch (730937) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259831)

A conservative, on my Slashdot? I guess it is more common than you would think.

Diversity (3, Interesting)

oyenstikker (536040) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259719)

Is there any evidence that diversity in the workplace has any tangible benefit to productivity, the bottom line, quality, or employee happiness? I would think that having a group of employees working together who have similar backgrounds, cultures, ideas, and styles would work better together than a diverse group - leading to higher productivity, higher employee happiness, better communication, and an overall positive effect on the bottom line.

One will often hear the argument that diversity brings different ideas and approaches to the table. This may be the case in some fields, and may have a positive impact in some fields. I suspect that IT is not one of those fields. Somebody is not likely to have a different and helpful perspective on any particular technical problem because they have different skin color, a different gender, or a different culture.

Before you call me racist, consider what I am suggesting: that a group of old nerdy white East-coast Slashdotters and a group of young liberal social Latino SoCal women will _both_ outperform a "diverse" group. I am not discussing, nor presently concerned with, the relative productivity of the first two groups.

It would be an interesting problem if it was shown that diversity actually hinders performance in certain fields. A corporation's policy of encouraging diversity would be in direct opposition to its responsibility to its shareholders.

Conduct a study that contradicts my hypothesis, I and will gladly admit to being wrong.

Re:Diversity (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259971)

It does create several insanely high paying positions that exist to write fluffy statements about "leveraging our diversity to create solutions for our customer".

I only wish that wasn't part of the mission statement of the company I work for....and really wish that the people who write that dribble didn't get 10x my salary....

hmm..why? you are kidding (1, Insightful)

doubledjd (1043210) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259721)

If you read the board, you'll see why.
I mean, damn. Most of the posts read like they are out of a steelworkers union after-bar party.
...and to think I argued with someone last week in defense of IT. "nooo..guys in technology aren't misogynistic"

Re:hmm..why? you are kidding (2, Insightful)

EraseEraseMe (167638) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259771)

I'm not misogynistic, I hate whiny bitches of both sexes.

Damn. (1)

grub (11606) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259733)


I'd love it if women were hired here for our IT group. It'd be cool to have a female character in our lunchtime AD&D games.

I'm joking, we do have a female here. One of the best IT people I've ever worked with

Well this is odd... (3, Insightful)

grassy_knoll (412409) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259749)

From TFA:

"My parents said we are [only] paying for four years of school and I could not become a lawyer in four years", 48 year-old CIO said. " I just said okay, well I want to make a lot of money and so what is the next best thing? And I did the research and the computing industry was the next big booming thing"


If you're in technology for the money, there would seem to be easier ways ( marketing, stock trader/finance ). Perhaps, if this is the motivation, a different path might be better?

However, this ( also from TFA ) seems to be spot-on:

"[Working in IT] is a place where I can get control that a child from a dysfunctional family wants," a 49 year-old IT operations architect, who had a traumatic childhood said. "I can make order. I can put those damn cards in the right order. I can get the syntax perfect. I can run it and have it compile cleanly. There are all of these tidiness control things that are so beautiful about programming and a computer program will not betray you. It does the same damn thing every time"


So, if you're a bitter control freak ( All programers and DBAs, raise your hands. Yes, you too. Mine is up as well.) welcome home.

What's interesting from TFA is 18 of 92 respondants quoted the first motivation, while 28 quoted the second. What, did the other 46 pick "other"?

Terrible article (1)

GeneralTao (21677) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259761)

The article is very badly written. It's next to impossible to glean the point the author is trying to make. So why is it again that women aren't being sold by recruiters' pitches? I read the article twice and I still don't know. Women don't care about job security or promotions? That seems doubtful. They want jobs that can lead into management? Isn't that... promotion?

I'm willing to consider that I may have the reading comprehension of a road apple, so someone please explain this article to me so's I can understand it.

"Math is hard, let's go shopping." (1)

PHAEDRU5 (213667) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259779)

And before you set up your pillory, I heard this on The Simpsons, so it must be true!

(Special insert for the clue-challenged: Malibu Stacey is as off as the HR people described in the article.)

It is a true quote (2, Interesting)

Jess (geek-chick) (896411) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259977)

It was originally part of Teen Talk Barbie in 1992. From the Barbie Wiki [wikipedia.org] (so you know it's true!) In 1992 Mattel released Teen Talk Barbie, which spoke a number of phrases including "Will we ever have enough clothes?", "I love shopping!", and "Wanna have a pizza party?" Each doll was programmed to say four out of 270 possible phrases, so that no two dolls were likely to be the same. One of these 270 phrases was "Math class is tough!"

My favorite part of the article (4, Insightful)

DigitalSorceress (156609) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259799)

From the Article::
    "My parents said we are [only] paying for four years of school and I could
      not become a lawyer in four years", 48 year-old CIO said. " I just said
      okay, well I want to make a lot of money and so what is the next best
      thing? And I did the research and the computing industry was the next big
      booming thing"

My first thought:
I have noted throughout my career that the worst IT people are those who are in it for the money or treat it as just a job.

Those managers and co-workers who have a true passion... those who live and breathe for technology: they're the ones that actually get stuff done.

Crap writing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259807)

I thought it was another shit summary, but it's actually a shit article. If all there was in the research was what's in the piece, then the research itself is crap - no insight why there aren't more women in IT.

Horribly Written with Little Logical Argumentation (1)

alstor (587931) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259823)

While I find the subject of this article very interesting, especially as it relates to why women are leaving the field of computer science (with a peak in the '80s), this is one of the worst written articles I have ever seen on any topic. The grammatical errors are so bad that they cause the meaning of several points to be lost, making it an extremely frustrating read. Basic things like missing apostrophes, quotations for expert opinions, and inconsistent quotation closure are among the most basic grammatical errors (e.g., "recruiters" versus "recruiter's" in the first sentence, the first sentence is a run-on, "Human-resources" should be "Human resources" in the second paragraph, no quotations for Eileen Trauth's quote, no citation for the rather hard-to-believe 60 percent of the workforce is female quotation). These two paragraphs say the exact same things about the technical group (the 28/92 is about 30% fyi):

While about 30 percent indicated they valued careers that afforded them opportunities to perfect skills in technical areas, others said they wanted careers with managerial opportunities. In addition, there was little overlap among the women who reported that managers give up technical skills to develop management skills.

Twenty-eight of the women in this study expressed sentiments aligned with the technical competence career anchor. These women spoke about valuing a career that afforded them opportunities to gain proficiency or to perfect skills in technical areas.
This quotation doesn't add anything useful from the study's viewpoint, and tries to play off the reader's emotions:

[Working in IT] is a place where I can get control that a child from a dysfunctional family wants," a 49 year-old IT operations architect, who had a traumatic childhood said. "I can make order. I can put those damn cards in the right order. I can get the syntax perfect. I can run it and have it compile cleanly. There are all of these tidiness control things that are so beautiful about programming and a computer program will not betray you. It does the same damn thing every time
Anyway, feel free to mod me troll, this horribly written piece just angered me when I was looking to read something insightful about this important issue.

Bah (1)

spellraiser (764337) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259857)

I see not a single reference to Mel Gibson in the article. I call shenanigans!

Actually... (4, Funny)

Applekid (993327) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259877)

According to Ace of Base,

All that she wants
Is another baby
She's gone tomorrow, boy.

So I don't know what IT can really offer women.

Recruiters (2, Informative)

CrazyTalk (662055) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259887)

The problem is not what the recruiters are pitching, it is the recruiters themselves. In most if not all IT-centric organizations that I have worked in, recruiters are young, good looking woman. This is entirely intentional, as a means to attract the young, generally not so good looking geek guys. Often the HR department of a Software company is the only department with a signficant number of females. Perhaps a few young hot guys in HR would help attract more women to IT.

TFA is crap (1)

bobaferret (513897) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259905)

This artical is a joke. I'm glad to hear that some lady feels that programming is a better palce than her disfunctional childhood, but who really cares? If the study were about disfunctional families and the warm feeling one gets from a computer I might care, but it isn't and I don't.

In my shop, women outnumber men. (1)

SadGeekHermit (1077125) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259913)

This is because I work in civil service, where we have a 37.5 hour workday, 9 to 5 with a half hour lunch, excellent benefits, plenty of vacation time off, and a living wage. Oh, and it takes an act of congress to fire one of us (pretty close, anyway).

Women are sensible. They want:

* Job security

* A living wage

* Reasonable hours that are compatible with raising a family

* Good benefits

* A nice working environment.

All of these things are available in plenty in civil service. I knew that years ago, and got in on it at first opportunity! Now, look at me: I'm surrounded by pretty women all day, and they're great to work with, too: no ego issues, the developers are all reasonable and sensible...

It's nerdvana!

Seriously. It's the truth.

I think I see the problem here... (2, Interesting)

EtoilePB (1087031) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259925)

The article itself is crap, really. It doesn't seem to address anything well or sensibly, as other commenters have noted. The real problem with being a woman in IT? Shows in the comment threads to this post.

I've worked IT jobs and I've worked education jobs and I've worked retail and that whole collection of jobs that someone works getting to where one needs to be, and even as recently as, oh, two weeks ago, showing up in response to something IT-related with the audacity of having been born and continuing to be an actual female gets raised eyebrows, snickers, and derisive comments. Now, I'm all for mocking mercilessly those who deserve it, but purely being female is not grounds for deserving it.

How about the top 10 (5, Funny)

Anon-Admin (443764) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259933)

10. Women do not like to work 80 hours a week.
09. Women expect to be promoted and IT people do not get promoted.
08. Women expect benefits and maturity leave which is hard to do when on call 24/7/365
07. Women Like having family time, not getting called and having to run because the the company sees the server as more important than their kids.
06. Women know that guys NEVER listen when they give instructions, so telling some one how to fix a computer is pointless.
05. Most women meet their husbands at work, and the IT department is not as good as being an executive assistant.
04. Women like to have others to talk to and geeks only drool when they are around.
03. Women expect to be treated with respect and we all know that IT is never treated with respect.
02. Women like taking baths and showers and can not stand being around people who do not.

And the number one reason is

01. Women never let guys know how smart they are, this would put them at a disadvantage when arguing.

The reason there are fewer women is bacause (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#19259987)

they are smarter then the rest of us in are 'rewarding' work to death for meager salary jobs.

If I was to do it over again, I'd become an actuary.

diverse workforce (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19259993)

from the article
"Addressing women's under-representation not only will help tackle the anticipated IT worker shortage but will help foster a diverse workforce, a cornerstone of both innovation and economic development, "

I'm sorry, I must have slept through that part. Which woman (besides COBOL by Grace Hopper)provided what computer innovation and/or spawned economic development.

By this reasoning, the NBA should draft three foot dwarfs in order to develop innovative offenses and increase the box office.

What women want from IT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19260019)

Sensitive male coworkers with blue eyes, square jaws, and big biceps?

ROTFLMAO (1)

Bill Dog (726542) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260031)

Ever wonder why there are so few women in the IT workplace? It turns out that the typical recruiters sales pitch, which emphasizing job promotion and security
Stop it, you're killing me.

IT industry reputation (1)

rev_sanchez (691443) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260051)

A lot of people think IT work = cubicles, fat and creepy nerds, impersonal, stressful, long hours, and high turnover or layoffs.

The perceived upsides to IT work are that there are quite a few jobs that have high pay for fairly young people and sometimes you get to play with cool, new stuff. I'm not going to speak for all women but I'm under the impression that women tend to value salary and cool equipment a little less than men tend to do when job hunting and value they may work environment more.

Maybe in the west but overseas its different (5, Interesting)

GovCheese (1062648) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260065)

I've been working overseas in the Middle East and Asia and my IT workforce have been pretty much evenly divided by gender. Perhaps non-western women view IT as an unusual opportunity to gain entre to the marketplace and work with men as peers. Why it's not appealing to western women is not clear in the article although I must say not much of anything is clear in the article.

nig`6a (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19260075)

serves to reinfo8ce

Lost on purpose of article (1)

harshmanrob (955287) | more than 7 years ago | (#19260119)

The article failed to point out exactly how women are being kept out of IT positions. I know many women who are Unix system admins and Java and .NET developers and I doubt someone conspired to keep them out of IT. I just do not see IT as an interest for the majority of women.
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