At Zikodrive, we have been operating as a successful motion control business now for nearly three years. In that time we have dealt with a number of different organisations and many different professionals. Whilst reading an article from Twitter about women in engineering, a thought occurred to me. In those three years, how many female engineers has Zikodrive worked with, in the projects we have completed?
The answer is…one.
The article suggested that around just 9% of the engineers in the UK are women. I was quite staggered at that statistic. Out of curiosity, I asked our Chief Engineer Graham how many women were on his degree course at university. His answer that there were three women out of around fifty students fits the general pattern.
I discussed this with our admin and finance manager Shelley to get her point of view:
“It never even entered my head at school, to even think about pursuing a career in engineering. Looking back, I was competent in Science and Maths and I could have explored it as a career option. Now I know more about some of the electronic side of engineering I’m quite annoyed and confused as to why it was always off the cards. In fact, I personally don’t know any females who pursued it. Now, having worked in this sector a while I can see engineering requires problem solving, creativity, patience and innovation. Absolutely no reason why more females shouldn’t be more involved.”
So, what can I do about it? Firstly, as an employer, I believe all staff whether they work in accounts or sales or manufacturing should be able to have the opportunity to get the training they need to understand the engineering behind what we do. Secondly, the message needs to be spread about what a wonderful industry engineering is to get involved in!
Going forward, I hope we see a big change in the industry in having more women contribute and work in engineering and in the meantime, let’s spread the word.