As we live in a day and age where digitalization has practically impacted every industry, tech advancements, and artificial intelligence has been stimulating more job creation.
In a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, it was found that engineers have been expected to be in more demand, creating more than 140,000 employment opportunities from 2020 to 2026. Moreover, nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled up by the next decade. This might seem like just the perfect time to be working in STEM industries.
However, things have been looking grim when it comes to hiring people in these fields. Jobs are being created much faster than people can fill them in, and people that are being hired lack the skills required for their technical positions. Hence, companies are working towards finding untapped talents to fill in the gaps of the demand of STEM talent – and employing women might just be the answer they are looking for.
Unfortunately, much progress must be made to allow women to be able to enter these fields. The reason why very few women participant in STEM fields can include – active discouragement, negative peer pressure, lack of role models, and evident harassment. Women have been discouraged due to the discriminatory factors they have to deal with in the workplace. Additionally, in many developing countries worldwide, females struggle to find access to their basic educational needs or gain acceptance in the workplace.
It has become of utmost importance that businesses should start acknowledging these issues if they ever wish to utilize the talents of females as equals in the STEM field. More workshops should be introduced to spread the awareness of gender parity in the workplace. The more people become aware of the consequences of these issues, the more likely they are to work towards a change.
Moreover, mentorship plans should be taken into consideration that can provide support and guide women, which can work as an effective tool to encourage women currently in or are planning to join the STEM field. Mentoring opportunities can help connect successful women with one another – causing them to become more confident and safer in their workspace, which positively impacts their work productivity as well.
Of course, many organizations are already working towards making their environment the ideal place where every individual can thrive and utilize talents to their utmost potential.
CSI Energy Group, African engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) company, is one of the few organizations that have been working towards this goal in various ways – especially in developing countries where women need the most support.
They have been involved in many projects that include youth skill development via their internship programs that allow everyone to have a chance at honing their skills throughout the duration of the program.
“We want everyone to have the opportunity to share their skills and talent in a workplace where both women and men are given the tools to allow them to grow, thrive, and compete on the fairground. Our internship program enables the exposure to engineering and non-engineering roles which are critical to our operations” says Annette Kanora, Director – Brand, Corporate Affairs & Administration at CSI Energy Group.
Aside from making an ideal environment for females to work with them, they have utilized the innovative approaches of both males and females and created some of the most effective ways to improve the lives of people in Africa by enhancing their infrastructure and access to electricity.
Improvements in their economic condition eventually lead the a way for developing countries to work towards creating institutes where females are granted the opportunity to pursue their interests in STEM fields.