More Than One in Three Women Suffer Sexism in Tech Industry, Crunch Survey Reveals

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New survey reveals 71% of female tech workers label sexism an industry problem.

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More than half of female respondents described the workplace sexism problem as ’moderate’ or ‘extreme’

A shocking 43% of women in the tech or IT industries have witnessed or experienced sexism in the workplace, a new survey* released today by online accounting firm Crunch reveals.

Sexism continues to be entrenched in the tech and IT working environment, with 71% of female workers labelling it an industry issue.

The survey, conducted by Crunch, asked male and female tech staff about their experiences relating to sexism and gender discrimination.

More than half (51%) of female respondents described the workplace sexism problem as ’moderate’ or ‘extreme’. In contrast, only 32% of their male colleagues agreed the issue is so widespread.

Despite its prevalence, sexism in tech remains largely unreported. Less than half (45%) of respondents said they would report a sexist act to management. 29% say they would leave the issue unreported, while 26% said they were unsure if they would take the issue further.

Laurence Barry, development manager at Crunch Accounting, said: "There is a serious shortage of skilled tech workers in this country and yet we may be discouraging half the potential candidates from a sustained career in this industry with outdated sexism. It is a problem that the entire industry needs to address. That needs to start with all tech workers, male and female, taking responsibility for reporting and responding to any sexism they experience in the workplace and with managers treating it as a serious problem.

“We also need more women in STEM education at all levels, so that the tech industries are recruiting higher numbers of female STEM graduates. This leads to a virtuous circle, because the more women we have in technology the more we see how false that gender gap is and we breakdown those barriers.”

We are seeing huge growth in female entrepreneurship amongst our clients and have a growing number of women in our Development department at Crunch, so I think we can see a very bright future where sexism in the tech industry is just a distant memory. But we still have work to do, as an industry, to achieve that.”

  • The survey by Crunch Accounting polled 500 IT workers located across the UK from 1 to 22 July 2014. Full results below:

In general, do you think sexism is a problem in the IT sector?

  • Sexism is an extreme problem in the tech sector

o Female - 18%
o Male – 12%

  • Sexism is a moderate problem in the tech sector

o Female - 33%
o Male – 20%

  • Sexism is minor problem in the tech sector

o Female - 20%
o Male – 21%

  • Sexism is not a problem in the tech sector

o Female - 14%
o Male – 28%

  • I don't know

o Female - 15%
o Male – 19%

Have you ever witnessed or experienced sexism in the workplace?

  • Yes

o Female - 43%
o Male – 29%

  • No

o Female - 57%
o Male – 71%

If you witnessed or experienced sexism at work, would you report it to management?

  • Yes – 45%
  • No – 29%
  • I don’t know – 26%

About Crunch Accounting

Crunch is the UK's first and fastest-growing online accountant, combining a team of expert in-house accountants available on-demand with simple online accounting software. Designed specifically for freelancers, contractors and small businesses, Crunch is more than just an accountancy firm – it’s everything you need to manage your finances. Their complete accounting solutions start at £64.50+VAT per month.
Crunch Accounting was co-founded by online entrepreneur Darren Fell and Head of Accountancy Steve Crouch, with investment from Bebo co-founder Paul Birch. Former Skype CEO Michael van Swaaij is Crunch Chairman.
Crunch are a UK Top 100 accountancy firm, and one of only two firms in the UK to offer an on-site training academy. In 2014 Crunch was named as one of four firms selected nationally by industry body PCG as offering an outstanding service for freelancers.

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