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Celebrating Women at DCMS

Category: career for women, DCMS, leading women, government policy, Building a career, Senior Women, Influential women, Menopause awareness, Menopause support, Government, Maternity Leave, Career and Talent Development, Jobs in Government, inspirational women, women in tech, International Women’s Day, Women In Technology, Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, UK Government, maternity, Female role models, Maternity leave policies, International Women’s Day 2022, Celebrating Women, Inspiring women in STEM

Gender Focus

In honour of International Women’s Day on 8th March, the Gender Equality Network at DCMS have been utilising the employee intranet across the month to highlight a range of support and policies available to women at DCMS. They have also organised events to showcase the achievements of, and opportunities for, women across the department and the sectors that DCMS support.

54% of DCMS staff identify as women. 53% of senior grades within DCMS are filled by individuals who identify as women. DCMS’s Secretary of State, Nadine Dorries and Permanent Secretary, Sarah Healey, the two most senior individuals in the department, are both women. DCMS are leading the way on having equal gender representation. But more than that, DCMS’s objective is to ensure everyone, regardless of their gender identity, has access to the same opportunities and career progression. DCMS is committed to creating a diverse talent pool to help them better serve the industries and communities they work with.

A few women focused policies that have been highlighted over the course of the month include Maternity Leave. DCMS has the best maternity leave package across government, with 9 months full-pay maternity leave. They have set up a Pregnancy and Maternity Working Group to support women at DCMS throughout their pregnancy, and during their time on maternity leave. They also recognise that pregnancy journeys do not follow the same path for everyone. DCMS possess comprehensive guidance on babyloss and miscarriage to support parents who might be impacted, and provide information for colleagues on how to best support their peers. Another female focused theme DCMS have also shed light on this month is Menopause. The Former Olympian Michelle Griffith-Robinson Oly shared her experience and information on how colleagues can support each other - including the launch of DCMS’s Menopause guidance.

Some of the fantastic events that were held in DCMS across the course of the month include: ‘Diversity in Security’ where one of the Director General’s spoke with Lindy Cameron, CEO of the National Security Centre.

‘Women in Tech’, where a panel discussed what a lack of diversity does to the development of technology.

And, to round off the month, a panel of high-profile representatives from across DCMS, and the sectors that they support, gathered to explore the role gender has played in shaping their career journeys and personal experiences.

The conversation was incredibly inspiring with senior female role models opening up about their experiences as women and their careers to date. They also shared reflections on advice they would tell their younger selves. This included:

  1. Always prepare for your luck. So often it’s said “you got lucky”, and whilst there is an element of luck and timing to everything in life, you can make sure you prepare for when that luck comes along.
  2. Set up an ‘appreciation folder’ in your email inbox. Imposter syndrome and self doubt are felt by everyone, at every level of seniority. To combat those thoughts a panel member suggested saving any emails you receive with positive feedback in a separate folder to refer back to whenever you may be experiencing feelings of self doubt.
  3. Don’t be afraid to ask for support. Sometimes there may feel like a pressure to ‘know it all’, but the panel were all in agreement to never feel like asking for support is a weakness.
  4. Find a supportive peer network and mentor.
  5. Think of your career as a tree rather than a ladder. There is so much pressure to ‘climb the ladder’. However, don’t be afraid to move laterally, try new things and not be fixed on achieving certain goals by a certain age.

Are you interested in joining DCMS? See what opportunities are available here.

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VERCIDA works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with VERCIDA to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please email [email protected] for more information.

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