Breaking Barriers: International Women's Day Calls for Gender Equality and Inclusion

Breaking Barriers: International Women's Day Calls for Gender Equality and Inclusion

International Women's Day, celebrated annually on March 8th, commemorates the achievements of women worldwide. It is a day to honor women's resilience, courage, and contributions to society while advocating for gender equality and women's rights. International Women's Day empowers women and inspires collective action to create a more inclusive and equitable world. On this day, prominent women IT leaders have shared their views with DT about how women are leading the world.

“We Look Forward To A World With Increased Inclusivity And Seeing More Women Techies Thrive In The Cybersecurity Space”

"Within the cybersecurity industry, there is a strong need to invest in and embrace the potential of women to transform the sector. In my experience, working in an environment where mentorship is encouraged, and robust support systems thrive, can be a game-changer and opens up several doors for our growth. Cybersecurity is a highly dynamic space, with its fair share of complexities. Being able to efficiently work in such an environment requires innovative thinking, adaptability and empathy- the qualities that women excel in. An increase in representation in the sector is not only about diversity, it's about ensuring a more resilient and inclusive digital world. As we move ahead, we look forward to a world with increased inclusivity and seeing more women techies thrive in the cybersecurity space.” - Geetha Ramanna, Director, Software Development and Network Security, Sophos

“Diversity Is An Important Pillar For NetApp, And We Are Consistently Increasing Our Women Representation Across Ranks”

“Witnessing the impactful role women play in sales and tech has been truly inspiring. I draw inspiration from their strength and tenacity. Their dedication and innovative approaches constantly drive our team forward. Women bring with them unique perspectives and unwavering determination which serve as a constant reminder of the limitless potential we possess when we embrace diversity and collaboration in the workplace. 

Diversity is an important pillar for NetApp, and we are consistently increasing our women representation across ranks. At the same time, our journey is not confined to numbers; it extends to creating an ecosystem where every individual can thrive regardless of gender. I take pride in seeing the achievements of the women at NetApp. They're not just driving technological advancements but are actively shaping a future where innovation breaks through gender stereotypes.” - Puneet Gupta, Vice President & Managing Director, NetApp India/SAARC

“Investing In Education, Mentorship, And Leadership Initiatives Empowers Women To Break Barriers”

“The ascent of women in tech in India is both a triumph and a call to action. Despite the challenges within the traditionally male-dominated realm, we have witnessed a remarkable shift as women rise through the ranks, particularly in cutting-edge fields like deep tech. In recognition of the importance of diverse perspectives in technology development, women have proven to bring unique value for equity in tech, ethical innovation, and inclusivity

However, a significant gender gap still exists: in India today, 43% of STEM course enrolees are female, which is one of the highest in the world; however, only 14% of tech leadership roles in the country are held by women. This inconsistency exists due to barriers such as societal norms and biases that keep women from progressing in the tech industry. When advocating for an increased representation of women in tech, learning and development (L&D) becomes essential. Investing in education, mentorship, and leadership initiatives empowers women to break barriers.

The journey towards gender equality in tech is a shared responsibility, with collaboration needed from individuals, organizations, and policymakers. Let's move forward inspired by progress, committed to transformative education and mentorship, to shape a more inclusive and innovative future in technology.” - Anjali Sharma, Director, Global Head of L&D, Fulcrum Digital

“In The Dynamic World of Technology, Women Play A Pivotal Role In Shaping The Landscape”

“We are honoured to be part of a movement where women are at the forefront of technology, breaking barriers, and leading with vision. This International Women’s Day, we celebrate the incredible women in tech who inspire and pave the way for others. Within Aurionpro Solutions, 'Inspiring Inclusion' isn't just a theme, it's the cornerstone of our approach. Empowering women in technology is our commitment and we are dedicated to championing inclusivity, embracing diversity, and fostering a workplace where every voice is valued. Together, we ignite inclusion and cultivate an environment of innovation that propels us toward collective success.

In the dynamic world of technology, women play a pivotal role in shaping the landscape. With their leadership and resilience, we chart a course towards excellence, driving our organization forward with purpose and determination. Today, we stand together, proud of our achievements and inspired by the limitless possibilities ahead.” -  Poonam Puthran, Executive Vice President – Banking, Aurionpro

“A Multifaceted Approach Is Imperative To Foster Investment In Women”

“Our journey has become an inspiring narrative of resilience and advancement as we continue to champion women's equality and empowerment. A recent report by the Ministry of Statistics demonstrates an increase of 4.2%, pushing female labour participation to 37% in India. This growth reflects a positive shift in the country's labour force dynamics, signifying a broader societal transformation. While every incremental gain fuels our progress and normalizes support for women, substantial work remains ahead.

The increase in female workforce participation requires a stronger focus and comprehensive approach from the private sector, government, and society. This year's theme, 'Inspire Inclusion,' stresses that investing in women has a ripple effect on society.  Diverse perspectives, experiences, and ideas from women lead to more innovative solutions to complex problems. Companies prioritizing gender diversity consistently outshine their competitors, proving the business case for inclusion.

A multifaceted approach is imperative to foster investment in women. The competitive and demanding nature of jobs, especially in the tech sector, demands companies to focus on decisive actions to promote women's engagement. Flexible work arrangements and mentorship programs assist women in navigating career obstacles and building confidence. As we navigate the era of 'smart-everything,' let’s also prioritize a smart equation for the future prosperity and well-being of our societies.” - Nithya Cadambi, Senior Director, Finance, Operations and Facilities, Commvault

“We Envision A Brighter And More Equitable Future, Where Every Woman Is Empowered”

“Women are inherently gifted multitaskers and relentless achievers, balancing various roles with grace and determination. I am immensely proud to be a part of this incredible community, where every success is not just an individual milestone but a testament to the indomitable spirit that characterizes us. Standing amidst remarkable female achievers encountered on my journey with Quick Heal, their countless stories of collective triumphs deeply inspire me.

Recognizing the crucial role women play in shaping societies and communities, Quick Heal places a paramount emphasis on gender equality and inclusivity. Simultaneously, at the Quick Heal Foundation, we believe in empowering women with the tools they need to overcome challenges and fulfill their aspirations. As we celebrate Women's Day, Quick Heal Foundation remains committed to fostering an environment where women can thrive through education, healthcare, and skill development.

We envision a brighter and more equitable future, where every woman is empowered to realize her full potential and contribute her unique talents to the betterment of society.” Said, Ms. Anupama Katkar, Chairperson of Quick Heal Foundation and Chief Operational Excellence, Quick Heal Technologies Limited. - Anupama Katkar, Chairperson, Quick Heal Foundation and Chief Operational Excellence, Quick Heal Technologies Limited

“We Will Continue To Amplify The Voices Of Women From Diverse Backgrounds”

“As we celebrate International Women's Day, we would like to emphasize the importance of recognizing and celebrating the diversity, achievements, and contributions of women from all backgrounds, identities, and experiences. It means ensuring that the voices and experiences of all women, including those from marginalized communities such as women of color, LGBTQ+ women, women with disabilities, and women from different socioeconomic backgrounds, are provided with spaces and opportunities for dialogue, empowerment, and advocacy that are inclusive of all women, regardless of their race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, or ability.

Qlik recognizes the unique struggles and experiences of marginalized women and are working towards creating a more equitable and inclusive environment where all women can thrive. We will continue to amplify the voices of women from diverse backgrounds, to collaborate with organizations that work specifically with marginalized women and communities, to provide resources and support for women facing intersecting forms of discrimination and oppression and other programs to embrace inclusivity to build a more just, equitable and inclusive society where women are valued, respected, and empowered to reach their full potential.”-Serine Loh, Head of Culture & Talent, APAC, Qlik

“We Remain Unwavering In Our Commitment To Creating Opportunities That Empower Women”

“This International Women's Day, we celebrate the achievements of women who have overcome obstacles and shattered stereotypes. For years, Equinix has championed the empowerment of women through WomenConnect, which provides mentorship and support, ensuring every woman can excel within our organization. Most recently, Equinix introduced “Equinix Hire Up Program”, an initiative incorporating Equinix hiring principles and a refined 6-step hiring process alongside comprehensive interview and talent selection skills training. This initiative underscores our dedication to fair and equitable hiring practices, attracting top talent to bolster Equinix's transformation journey.

[Specifically in India, we launched the Women Returnee Program to assist women on career breaks in rejoining the workforce to resume their professional journey. Through this pilot program, participants receive training and mentorship to equip them for the industry re-entry, fostering skills and confidence essential for success. Our proactive efforts to address gender bias and inequality have led to a notable increase in gender representation in recent years. Establishing 9 Employee Engagement and Collaboration Networks (EECNs) and 35 WeAreEquinix teams demonstrates our commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive culture.

These endeavors yielded tangible results, with a significant 13% year-over-year increase in our global female workforce as reported in our 2023 earnings. At Equinix, we recognize that diverse perspectives drive continued innovation and advancement. We remain unwavering in our commitment to creating opportunities that empower women and contribute to a more balanced and thriving organization.” - Hwa Choo Lim, VP, Human Resources, Asia Pacific, Equinix

“At EY GDS, We Encourage Our Women To Build Skyscrapers And Not Just Break The Glass Ceilings”

“At EY GDS, we encourage our women to build skyscrapers and not just break the glass ceilings. We recognize that diversity is the foundation of innovation and excellence, and we believe in the power of representation and have a specific commitment to advancing social equity by providing a level-playing field for women in the industry. Hence, we have implemented a host of initiatives to empower women throughout their careers.

Having a role model to look up to inspires the next generation to dream big. Our mentorship program – where experienced women leaders provide guidance, support, and invaluable insights to future generations of women professionals – has been a game changer in this regard. Whether it's remote work options, flexible hours, or tailored career paths, we're committed to ensuring that our women employees thrive both personally and professionally. Our training and mentorship programs, as well as other employee-focused schemes have hugely benefited our women employees.

The commitment of EY GDS toward corporate responsibility is next to none. To enable the role of technology as an opportunity for all, we’re bridging the digital divide so that people are not limited in work and life by a lack of digital skills. We are committed to providing the tools, resources, and environment that all EY professionals need to be successful and build meaningful careers. By providing such launchpads and fostering a culture of inclusivity, we're not just breaking barriers; we're building a better working world.” - Pallavi Godbole, Americas Leader, Assurance, EY Global Delivery Services India LLP

“Women Are Playing A Crucial Role In Driving Business Growth And Shaping Organizational Culture”

“Women are playing a crucial role in driving business growth and shaping organizational culture. According to Indeed's Promoting Women for Better Work report, Indian women are leading the global movement for pay equity. They are advocating for equal opportunities and spearheading diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. To create a work environment that is inclusive, boosts productivity and encourages innovation, companies must prioritize diversity and implement gender-specific policies such as flexible working hours, transparent pay practices, and formal regulations. By doing so, they can attract, retain, and support female talent while promoting gender equality.” - Nishita Lalvani, Marketing Director, India & SG, Indeed.

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