Better platform for innovation and creativity

Getting more women into STEM benefits everyone since a team whose members have diverse perspectives and backgrounds will be more creative and innovative, as well as better aligned with customers and society alike.

Mixed teams bring wider experience, different ways of thinking and fresh approaches to problem solving – these key skills are needed to meet the challenges faced by many industries, particularly in light of the disruption caused by the pandemic.

More diverse teams have been shown to be more likely to radically innovate and anticipate shifts in consumer needs, helping their companies outperform their rivals. (Diversity Wins, McKinsey and Company, May 2020)

Having more women on a team can also provide a more balanced view when it comes to gender issues such as bias in artificial intelligence, product design and the creation of technology. (Why do we need more women in tech? BCS, March 2021)

One study argues that companies with greater gender diversity generate about 34% of their revenues from innovative products and services. (Top Three Reasons We Need More Women In Tech, Forbes, March 2020)

Research also shows that companies with above-average diversity produce a higher proportion of revenue from innovation (45% of total) than those with below-average diversity (26%) – which translates into stronger overall financial performance. (Five workforce trends to watch in 2021, Deloitte, Dec, 2020)

Unsurprisingly, increased innovation strengthens the business case. WISE estimates that improving the ratio of women to men in STEM innovation by 1% could increase company revenues in that sector by £300m a year. (Making a difference, why women in STEM become innovators, WISE, March 2019)

Corporate directors also agree that diversity on boards has benefits to boardroom innovation. A US report by PwC shos that 94% say that it brings unique perspectives to the boardroom, 87% think it enhances board performance and 76% believe it enhances company performance. (Turning crisis into opportunity, PwC, September 2020)

  • Improving women-men ratio in STEM innovation by just 1% can raise revenues
  • 94% of directors say diversity brings unique perspective to the boardroom
  • Diverse teams are more likely to radically innovate and outperform rivals
  • Having more women on a team can provide better insight into gender issues
  • More diverse firms tend to have higher proportion of revenue from innovation

‘Bringing women into software development can introduce an extra dynamic. Women often bring a detailed approach and that can make for better teams’ – Conrad Langworthy, head of Sky’s Software Engineering Academy.

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