Push Gaming: Welcoming female talent to the industry
Fiona Hickey, Head of Sales at Push Gaming, sits down with three of the developer’s employees and asks if iGaming companies are doing enough to attract female talent.
In some people’s minds, the global online gambling industry needs to do more when it comes to attracting women to roles in technology, IT and design. There is a lot of talk about equality and diversity in the workplace and in particular the need for operators, suppliers and regulators to employ more women.
This is something I and my fellow female colleagues at Push Gaming, including Kajal our Art Director and Game Developers Oksana and Olenka, both agree and disagree with. We recently sat down to discuss the situation and below each team member provides their thoughts on whether enough is being done to encourage female talent into the online gambling sector.
Olenka Lysak, Game Developer:
I don’t think there are any additional barriers to women working in technology, IT and design roles, however I do acknowledge the number of women in such roles is low. I would love to see more women in these roles – particularly for programming as it is more aligned with what I do at Push Gaming.
That being said, I do not believe it is the responsibility of the online gambling industry, be it an operator or game developer, to employ women just because they are women. Candidates must be chosen because they are the best, regardless of whether they are male or female. So, for women thinking about a career in iGaming, go for it and you will not regret it one bit. Sure, it can be tough sometimes, but you just need to be patient whether that is relating to a long-term career goal or a small task that needs completing quickly.
Oksana Biletska, Senior Games QA:
The online gambling sector is still male-dominated, particularly in IT and tech roles and this makes it tough for talented and skilled females wishing to work in these areas of the industry. This should not be the case and jobs should be awarded on merit. Of course, there can always be more done to help improve the number of women applying for and securing jobs in IT and tech.
I suggest that organisations actively encourage female candidates to apply for roles and go the extra mile to make clear that they want to welcome them with open arms. This can be achieved through different industry associations and groups and well as dedicated awards ceremonies for female employees.
Kajal Verma, Art Director:
The global online gambling industry is fully aware that more needs to be done when it comes to diversity, inclusion and workplace equality. This is certainly the case for the number of women working in key roles across IT, technology, design and at the executive level.
That said, things are changing and there really is a huge opportunity for women looking to enter the sector in these roles to truly shine. This is because organisations are becoming increasingly aware of the upsides of having a balanced and inclusive workforce, and that women are just as talented, skilled and dedicated as men.
In general, society tends to have the opinion that men can achieve anything and the seed for this idea is planted during school and university. But this creates a mindset of limitation among women, many of whom are just as capable as men when it comes to working in important roles in IT, tech and design. This is compounded by the fact that the iGaming sector has been and still is male-dominated, which is pushing women in other directions when it comes to their careers.
To encourage more women into gaming, I suggest that organisations do the following:
- Organise events and talks for women in gaming where females in the sector can talk about opportunities and challenges, successes and failures.
- These events create a safe space for women to express themselves openly and honestly, and to also discover that they are not alone.
- Social media posts from companies in the sector need to be more gender-sensitive. Women are still being sexualised and glamorised across the industry and this needs to change.
- The topic of workplace equality and inclusion is an interesting one, and here at Push Gaming we employ based on talent and skill.
- But we also believe that the industry should be doing more to make women aware of the roles available and to encourage them to apply.
- This in turn will lead to a balanced and inclusive workforce.