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How do you close the diversity gap in technology companies?

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Diversity in Tech 2018 is the UK’s First Full-Bodied Conference Dedicated To Increasing Diversity In The Fastest Growing Sector Of Our Economy

Last year, LinkedIn released a report that revealed how the gender gap has changed (or stagnated) in the last 15 years. It turns out that while overall female representation varies from industry to industry—for instance, women make up less than a quarter (23%) of STEM professionals—the leadership gap is universal. You even find it in industries in which women are overrepresented: take healthcare, where women make up 62% of the workforce, but only 49% of leadership positions (a leadership gap of 13%). While the overall gender ratio can reveal barriers to entry, leadership gaps demonstrate barriers to advancement.

According to their 2017 diversity report, more than 50% of the employees at Apple and Google are Caucasian. That information may not surprise you, but what could is the loss of potential money and great candidates.  “Workplace culture drives turnover, significantly affecting the retention of underrepresented groups, and costing the industry $16 billion a year,” a statement found in the 2017 Kapor Center for Social Impact study on tech leavers.

While the conversation is improving, the numbers are still bleak. And according to ATLASSIAN 2018: State of Diversity and Inclusion in US Tech report, here’s why – fatigue has set in and progress has stalled. People are tired of talking about diversity and inclusion, frustrated by talk not turning into impactful action, and overwhelmed by the number of issues. While respondents continue to say that diversity and inclusion are important, action declined across the board.

The Diversity in Tech conference brings together leaders in prominent tech companies who are decision makers. It hopes to gain practical strategies for creating a diverse and inclusive workforce – and links it to the bottom line. What if diversity could give your business the competitive edge it needs? Are you more likely to take it seriously? In turn, this should improve your employee satisfaction, creative output, customer orientation and company’s decision making.

Here’s a list of who will be attending the Diversity in Tech conference;

Rajesh Agrawal, Deputy Mayor of London for Business

Rajesh Agrawal is the Deputy Mayor of London for Business. Born in India, Rajesh moved to London in 2001. As an entrepreneur he founded RationalFX in 2005, and Xendpay in 2014, both companies utilizing technology to reduce the cost of international money transfer for businesses and individuals.

Rajesh is passionate about promoting entrepreneurship and creating opportunities for young people. He was appointed Chair of Oxfam’s Enterprise Development Programme in 2015 and has been a Patron of the Prince’s Trust for many years.

As Deputy Mayor Rajesh aims to be a strong voice for London’s business community, protecting jobs and growth, and ensuring that the capital remains the most open and attractive place to do business in the world.

David McQueen, MD — Narratively Ltd

David McQueen is a dynamic international speaker, facilitator and presentations coach. He is passionate about effective communication and leadership and has had the opportunity to to speak, present and chair conferences and awards all over the world. David is also presenter. He is the current host of The David McQueen Show a leadership podcast, and was the former host of Pioneers TV for Virgin Media and Vocation Vocation Vocation for Channel 4.

David comes to this conference based on his work around widening participation in tech. From conducting presentation skills for tech companies to getting students being more engaged in careers in STEAM. He has also worked extensively in coaching startups and scaleups for pitching for finance. He is well known as the resident pitch coach for Sir Richard Branson’s VOOM competition. More recently he was one of the founder members of UKBlackTech, an organisation tasked with advocating more talent from the BAME community into the tech industry.

Jacky Wright, Chief Digital and Information Officer — HMRC

As HMRC’s Chief Digital and Information Officer, Jacky is responsible for all of the technology powering one of the biggest digitally-enabled transformations anywhere in Europe. Her teams run the IT and telephony that allows HMRC to manage 2.3 billion transactions and collect more than half a trillion pounds a year in revenue to fund UK Plc. Jacky joined HMRC in October 2017 from a private sector background. She is well known in the industry as a senior executive who is a transformational global leader and innovative technologist. She is passionate about the impact innovation can have in truly transforming services for people and businesses in a positive way.

Jacky is also proud to represent women and BAME in technology. She was recently recognised as one of the UK’s most influential black people in the 2018 Powerlist.

Daryn Edgar, VP, Digital Advisory, EMEA — SAP

Daryn is an energetic and accomplished executive whose progressive career in the technology sector has been developed internationally within global enterprises as well as key industries. Recognised by ComputerWeekly’s Most Influential Women in UK IT list, Daryn speaks on a range of topics in digital technology, commercial development, diversity and leadership. As an active startup mentor, Board member and angel investor, Daryn is skilled at building relationships to produce value and influence direction.

With success, as both an entrepreneur with start-up companies as well as an intrapreneur within a global multinational, Daryn has a proven track record structuring deals and operations that drive value for the business plans in play.  Commercially driven with achievements in turnarounds and mergers and acquisitions, Daryn excels at developing international teams within a culture of trust and inspiration.

Shaheen Sayed, Head of Health & Public Services Business, UK & Ireland —Accenture

Shaheen El-Sayed is Head of Accenture’s Health & Public Services Business in the UK and Ireland. Responsible for providing transformational solutions to the public sector using new platforms and ways of thinking. Shaheen holds significant experience from her twenty-year career at Accenture where she has led complex technology and business transformation programmes for clients across the public and private sector, both in the UK and globally. As a ‘’hands on’’ practitioner, she has driven some of the most complex implementations in Justice, Health; Rural Affairs and Capital Markets. Most recently, she has been working as an advisor to senior Financial Services clients at the forefront of their digital transformation and driving first-in-kind innovation from inception to execution.

Shaheen is a respected adviser on inclusive business cultures and is a recognised thought leader on human capital and the evolution of talent in the digital age. She was recently included in the Top 100 influential Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Global leaders by the Financial Times and Empower. She is a passionate campaigner for Inclusion & Diversity in the City, with a specific focus on Social Mobility and Race.

Amy Lynch, Head of Diversity & Inclusion, UK — ThoughtWorks

Amy has been working with technology teams and organisations for over a decade, with a background spanning recruitment, sales and marketing. Passionate about equality and tackling injustice, she is currently heading up diversity & inclusion for ThoughtWorks, a global technology consultancy, working to make the tech industry a safer, more welcoming place for all. She is a keen photographer, enjoys travel and is an active member of the tech communities across Manchester & London. Twitter: @Amy_Lynch

Steven Cox, Vice President, Diversity and Inclusion Ambassador — Fujitsu

Steven has held a range of strategic roles in Fujitsu, until recently being responsible for its UK Public Sector and Transport business. It’s his passion for diversity and inclusion however which led him to his current position.

Now as Fujitsu’s ambassador for Diversity & Inclusion, Steven is identifying best practice and incorporating it into Fujitsu’s global approach for workplace inclusion and workforce diversity. Steven is also identifying the ways in which technology such as machine learning and artificial intelligence can enable inclusive workplaces and workforce diversity.

As a champion for diversity and inclusion, Steven has helped embed a more inclusive culture in the UK company, and he is the executive sponsor of Shine, Fujitsu’s LGBT+ and ally networking group. He has been on the Financial Times top 100, and The Times top 50, LGBT executives in business lists.

Steven can be found on LinkedIn (StevenAJCox) and Twitter (@StevenAJC).

Pamela Hutchinson, Head of Diversity and Inclusion EMEA — Bloomberg

Pamela is the Head of Diversity and Inclusion for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Bloomberg. In this role she serves as a partner and thought leader on the D&I strategy and vision in the region. Pamela is cited as one of the most recognized thought leaders and vocal advocates for diversity across the private sector and has more than 20 years’ experience in managing diversity across engineering, financial services, technology and media. Pamela was recognized in the 2017 Power List of Britain’s most influential people of African and African Caribbean heritage and was awarded Head of Diversity of the Year in the 2016 European Diversity Awards.

Alix Burge, CTIO IoT, Service and Digital — Ventures at BT

Alix Burge is Chief Technology and Information Officer for the Wholesale and Ventures division of BT with a specialised focus on strategy, IOT, digital and service. She is responsible for providing and delivering a common, customer centric technical strategy across the diverse portfolio of businesses, developing new propositions through innovation and transformation through technology.

Prior to her 4 years in BT, Alix has worked extensively across the telecoms sector, starting her career in Vodafone as a voice engineer before leaving to broaden her experience in other companies such as Ericsson and 3.  Alix, having led on two successful company mergers, is familiar with transformation challenges within large-scale organizations and is a keen advocate of cultural change.

Throughout her career, Alix has keenly promoted diversity and inclusion, and being a mum of two young girls, has a personal interest in gender diversity.  She works as a mentor both formally and informally within BT actively engaging with women in STEM organizations.

Farrah Qureshi, CEO — Global Diversity Practice

Farrah Qureshi is the CEO of Global Diversity Practice. She is globally recognised as one of the foremost experts on Diversity and Inclusion consultancy and training. Farrah has successfully delivered, designed, managed and resourced learning interventions for a variety of clients spanning an impressive portfolio of corporate and public sectors, nationally and internationally. Farrah was a pioneer in developing global diversity consulting and has worked in and delivered to clients and delegates in over 100 countries; her work has been experienced in over 150 countries worldwide. Farrah is a regular keynote speaker on D&I, Unconscious Bias and Inclusive Leadership, having headlined conferences for Walmart, Unilever and the World Bank. Farrah has over 25 years of experience in Diversity and Inclusion, aligning her outputs to Organisation Transformation, Leadership Behaviours, Cultural Change and Behavioural Economics combined with a strategic business-focused approach. Farrah specialises in working at Board, CEO and Leadership levels.

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