Category: Industry News, Science, Engineering, technology, computing, inspiration, contrubution
Sky won the WISE Employer Award 2016 for their support of Women in STEM.
What are the WISE Awards?
WISE empowers and motivates people in business, industry and education to increase the participation, contribution and success of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). WISE aims to inspire young women to choose maths, physics and computing and create gender parity in the UK’s scientific, technology and engineering workforce. The WISE awards celebrate the hard work of their members to encourage women to work in STEM.
What do Sky do to support women in STEM?
Launched in 2014, Sky’s Women in Leadership programme aims to open opportunities for women to progress into leadership roles. They believe that having a gender balanced leadership team makes them a better business and aims to increase the percentage of women in senior positions to 50/50.
To achieve this goal they’re implementing three strategies:
Firstly, they’re levelling the playing field by creating 50/50 candidate shortlists for all senior positions. Each department’s senior executives have bonus related targets to attain more women in leadership and are tracked quarterly to monitor progress.
Secondly, they’re supporting and inspiring the women already working for them through their Women in Leadership Sponsorship and Development programme (where women are matched with a senior sponsor who acts as an advocate for them around the business).
Finally, they’re attracting the best person for the role via techniques such as targeted marketing. They also hold regular events to attract women, such as partnering with Red Magazine to co-host a series of events aimed at women in tech, providing them with coding skills.
Winning the WISE Employer Award
The WISE Employer Award is presented to an employer who has adopted the Ten Steps or a similar framework and can demonstrate a positive impact on the recruitment, retention and progression of women in their organisation, through their supply chain and/or the wider industry. Sky’s attainment of the 2016 WISE Employer Award is testament to the success of their Women in Leadership programme.
Sky revised its recruitment process making the job descriptions attractive to female candidates and maintaining 50/50 balanced shortlists for all senior positions. They also rolled out unconscious bias training to make the interview process fairer and more focused on skills and experience than emotional factors.
The creation of the Women in Leadership Sponsorship and Development programme offers tailored development and inspiration sessions on topics ranging from self-belief to strategy and finance, are helping to further support the women already employed by Sky and build their skill sets.
Sky has also implemented schemes to give employees flexibility and facilities onsite to make it easier to manage life tasks whilst at work, such as a state of the art gym, onsite beautician and hair salon, and a dry cleaners. Furthermore, they offer family care support and have a shared parental leave scheme, which offers six months’ full paid leave to new parents.
Sky is also targeting women at entry level to encourage them to take up a career in STEM at an early stage. They offer apprenticeships and work experience schemes such as the Software Engineering Academy and Sky Academy Careers Lab day, which focus on giving 16-19 year-olds the chance to take part in practical workplace challenges centring around Technology, Business and Media. This year, their technology graduate intake will be 50% female making their efforts a success.
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