Women in technology have an average of nearly three years less experience than their male counterparts, according to new figures.

The experience gap was highlighted by UK recruitment firm Anderson Frank in a report on the industry’s gender balance at both leadership and middle management levels.

On average, it was found that men in technology have 14.2 years of experience, while women have 11.3.

Anderson Frank says this disparity could impact women’s chances of progression while also restricting their access to senior and leadership roles.

Chairman and chief executive James Lloyd-Townshend said: “We know that women are under-represented at every level in tech, but what this new data really shows us is that there’s an experience gap at work for those women already in the sector. 

“With that gap at almost three years, it’s not difficult to see how this impacts progression and access to those more senior and leadership roles. Not only are there fewer of those positions available, but male tech professionals effectively have a head start in terms of their experience in the sector.”

‘Experience is vital for progression’

He added: “This data is also a reminder that the conversation around inclusion has to be more than just a discussion of the numerical gender balance at each level. 

“The numbers are important and we have to keep pushing towards equal access, but we also have to be exploring the question of progression and how training and development opportunities, and experience factor into that. 

“It’s vital that women are able to enter the sector and that they’re able to progress within it. Experience is a massive part of that.” 

Commenting on the findings, Silka Patel, chair of Scotland Women in Technology (SWiT) says that pursuing “clear support mechanisms” is key to successfully achieving better gender equality in technology.

Silka Patel, chairperson of Scotland Women in Technology (SWiT)

She said: “SWiT recognise the importance of supporting women to enter professions in technology, as well as retaining and progressing female talent into roles that are significant whether lateral or promoted positions. 

“Having a diverse workflow is crucial to the development and progression of ethical, innovative and robust technology which is reflective and supportive of our society.”

The statistics were derived from the 2022-2023 careers and hiring guides offered by tech giant Tenth Revolution Group and its recruitment brands.

The total sample size for this study was 3,093, of which 2,230 were men and 766 were women. 

It refers to tech professionals working across NetSuite, Salesforce, Microsoft 365, Azure, and Business Applications, as well as Amazon Web Services.