Women remain underrepresented in SA IT sector

The South African ICT industry is becoming more welcoming towards women but there remains a great disparity between male and female employees in the sector, according to Kgabo Ralebepa, associate director in the IT audit division at professional services firm SekelaXabiso.

Ralebepa said it is up to her female counterparts to turn these figures around.

“Women should focus on developing their business and leadership skills which will enable them to take up leadership roles within any organisation. This can be done by further developing their management skills and getting involved in other areas of their respective businesses,” she said.

“We need to acquire business skills in order to move to higher decision making roles.”

According to the Institute of Information Technology Professionals of South Africa (IITPSA), women hold 55 per cent of IT jobs globally but in South Africa, where they make up 55 per cent of the population, only 20 per cent of the ICT workforce is populated by women.

Ralebepa said the first step to learning new skills and getting involved in other areas of the business is to understand the business model by learning how other business units operate.

“The ICT industry is transforming and more welcoming to women – the opportunity is in our hands now. I urge women to take initiative, get involved in other areas of the business, learn, lead and take charge,” she said.

Image courtesy of Shuttershock

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