However, it seems there are wide variations of attitudes towards women in the tech industry depending on their geographical location.
Worldwide, Apple comes out on top with 28% of senior positions held by women, having previously received criticism for the lack of diversity within its board of directors.
Apple’s appointment of former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts (pictured above) and Sue Wagner, founding partner and director of BlackRock, since then has set a new standard in gender diversity for the brand, as has Ahrendts’ income.
According to Apple’s 2015 Proxy Statement, she earned over $70 million on joining the team, far surpassing the earnings of her fellow male executives.
Apple recently announced that its retail store retention rate is at its highest ever (81%), following on from the introduction of its longer parental leave and an egg freezing policy in 2015.
Following closely behind Apple is Sony, where 27% of senior roles are held by women. Recent reports suggest that this increases to 33% in the US but is at its lowest (6%) in Japan.
HTC comes in third, with one in five (20%) senior positions belonging to a woman – perhaps due to co-founder Cher Wang. Having helped to create one of the world’s leaders in smartphone technology, she has built a total workforce with an almost equal (49% female) gender split.
Says Abby Francis, spokesperson for Mobiles.co.uk: “Despite the surge in media promotion of female participation in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) based roles, women continue to be under-represented.”
“Regardless of the fact that girls out perform boys at GCSE and A-Level, and more women graduate from university than men, just 12% of engineering and technology undergraduates are women.”
Dianah Worman, Diversity Adviser at the CIPD (the professional body for HR and people development), added: “The benefits of having more senior women within a business are now becoming evident, as those who have done so share their experiences. It affects the bottom line, profits and output.”
“There is no quick win for businesses who want to redress the gender balance. They must invest the time and money – and understand the need to do that. You have to make sure that women already working in technology have access to the appropriate training and are encouraged to participate, and that you are giving them the opportunities to build their profile within the business and the industry.”
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