EXCLUSIVE: According to a report, black women make up just 1.7% of the tech industry workforce.
Black women are leading the charge of the revolution to increase their representation in the tech sector.
Latoya Elder and Sherrell Dorsey have developed mentorship programs and literary resources to help black job seekers who want to pursue limitless tech jobs.
“In so many situations, we as black women weren’t told we deserved to be at those tables. We weren’t even told there was room for us at those tables,” said Latoya Elder, Founder of Her Tech Unicorn. leGrio.
According to a report by Anita B, black women make up just 1.7% of the tech industry workforce. To address this underrepresentation, Elder connects black women with the goal of providing personalized career development. Within the Her Tech Unicorn network, women receive advice on interview preparation, career coaching and salary negotiation.
The main reason Elder started the organization was to address what she saw as a lack of commitment from big business.
“It makes me a little angry to know that this little me with a little bit of resources, a little bit of money and a little bit of time, was able to have that kind of impact,” she explained. .
Not only does the Elder program prepare women for tech jobs, it also helps secure them.
“We brought in a tech company, LiveRamp, who actually sponsored our event,” Elder explained. “And they did on-site interviews and ended up hiring people from my organization into six-figure roles.”
Like Elder, Sherrell Dorsey wants to help build a pipeline for black job seekers to secure jobs in the tech industry. Dorsey believes tech jobs will provide the flexibility and salaries needed to support the unique lived experiences of Black Americans.
For starters, Dorsey’s book, Advantage: The future of work for the rest of usprovides salary ranges for common technical positions and explains how salaries vary by location.
Dorsey said leGrio that, overall, most tech positions have become more flexible with remote work options, and more accommodating by offering lifestyle perks like student loan repayment or even egg-freezing procedures.
The main purpose of Dorsey’s book is to present a guide for black job seekers to see that six-figure salaried tech jobs are accessible. Using the book as a guide, Upper Hand tells readers how to position themselves for a tech pivot despite having a degree in another field or having no degree at all.
“You can still go and do maybe a six- to nine-month certificate or go through boot camp or things like that, and still come out with six-figure jobs,” Dorsey explained. “There’s also a transition, and it’s really through this idea of certifications, micro-certifications and showing your work in public through spaces like GitHub.”
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