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  • Writer's pictureMariane Bekker

How to Recruit More Female Engineers

Updated: Jun 20, 2023



Building a diverse and inclusive engineering team is not only a moral imperative but also a strategic advantage for any organization. As a former director of engineering at Mindbody, I had the privilege of leading the growth of our engineering team from a small group of seven professionals to over 50 in both San Francisco and New York within 2 years. Throughout this journey, our primary focus was to achieve a balanced 50% ratio of women and men while fostering a thriving and inclusive work environment. In this article, I will share the strategies we implemented to successfully build a diverse engineering team and create an inclusive culture that led to our remarkable success.

1. Expanding the Recruitment Pipeline:


To attract a diverse range of talent, we adopted a proactive approach to expand our recruitment pipeline. We recognized the importance of reaching out to both women and men engineers equally and actively engaged with underrepresented groups through conferences, networking events, and professional platforms. By widening our talent pool, we increased the chances of attracting exceptional individuals from diverse backgrounds and experiences.


2. Inclusive Job Postings


Crafting inclusive job postings played a crucial role in attracting diverse candidates. We revised our job descriptions to use gender-neutral language and emphasized our commitment to diversity and inclusion. By showcasing our inclusive culture, flexible work policies, and supportive environment, we conveyed that our company was an ideal place for diverse talent to thrive and contribute their unique perspectives.

3. Unbiased Interview Process


Mitigating unconscious bias during the interview process was a priority for us. We implemented strategies to ensure fairness and objectivity by creating rubrics and standardized interview questions. This allowed us to evaluate technical skills, problem-solving abilities, and cultural fit consistently. By making objective assessments based on merit, we eliminated bias based on gender or background, enabling us to identify top talent accurately.

4. Transparency in Compensation


Promoting transparency in compensation was a fundamental principle for us. We openly shared our compensation package, including salary ranges, benefits, and equity offerings, with candidates early in the hiring process. Utilizing leveling frameworks, we aligned job responsibilities and skills with appropriate pay scales, ensuring equitable compensation. Paying women engineers on par with their male counterparts helped address potential gender pay gaps and fostered a culture of fairness and equality.

5. Diverse Interview Panels


Representation matters, and we recognized its value during the interview process. We made it a priority to include women engineers on our interview panels, ensuring diverse perspectives and experiences were represented. This not only enhanced the evaluation process but also created an inclusive and welcoming environment for candidates. It sent a powerful message that we valued diversity and provided applicants an opportunity to connect with individuals who understood their unique experiences.

Building a diverse engineering team requires intentional efforts and an inclusive mindset. By implementing strategies such as expanding the recruitment pipeline, crafting inclusive job postings, adopting an unbiased interview process, promoting transparency in compensation, and incorporating diverse interview panels, we successfully grew our engineering team while achieving an impressive 50% gender ratio.

Embracing diversity fosters an environment where different perspectives, experiences, and ideas thrive, leading to increased innovation and success. Building a diverse team is not only a moral imperative but also a strategic advantage that fuels creativity, collaboration, and overall company growth. As we continue to strive for a more inclusive tech industry, let us remember that building a diverse engineering team is an ongoing journey. By implementing these strategies and cultivating an inclusive culture, we can pave the way for greater innovation, empower underrepresented groups, and shape a brighter future for the tech community as a whole. Together, let's embrace diversity and create a more inclusive tech ecosystem.

 

Mariane Bekker is a passionate advocate for women in tech, an angel investor, and the founder & CEO of Upward, a premier boutique recruitment agency connecting companies with exceptional diverse tech talent. With over a decade of experience building diverse engineering teams at leading startups, she’s navigated the intricacies of the startup landscape and understands the unique needs and aspirations of founders. Follow her LinkedIn for insights, industry trends, and valuable resources about Startups, Tech, and Diversity.

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Mariane Bekker is a passionate advocate for women in tech, an angel investor, and the founder & CEO of Upward, a premier boutique recruitment agency connecting companies with exceptional diverse tech talent. With over a decade of experience building diverse engineering teams at leading startups, she’s navigated the intricacies of the startup landscape and understands the unique needs and aspirations of founders. Follow her LinkedIn and Twitter for insights, industry trends, and valuable resources about Startups, Tech, and Diversity.

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