Shocking findings in BCS diversity report

BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT continues to produce very useful analyses of the tech industry workforce. A recent report on diversity is a must-read. The first part is based on their own research and the second on Office for National Statistics data.

The top line results do not make for rosy reading. Only 13% of respondents consider that their organisation makes it a high priority to have a diverse team, with 31% feeling it is relegated to a low priority status. That perception does not fit very well with the well-known benefits of developing with diverse teams — also reflected in this survey — where 49% considered that teams who lack diversity would build AI applications with biased decision-making (only 14% thought this wasn’t a problem). Gender and age are perceived to be the main diversity barriers to getting a first job in IT, but when it comes to progressing a career gender comes out as a clear leader. Worryingly, 36% of respondents consider themselves to have been the victim of prejudice or discrimination in their workplace in the last 12 months. When taken with the fact that a full third of respondents have received no diversity training of any kind, that is maybe unsurprising. And, when looking from the outside in, 44% consider that they have witnessed another person as a victim.

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