Women in Engineering Recruitment.
As an outsider, it may be common to think why would females join such a male dominated industry? Not only recruitment, but the recruitment of engineers that for decades has been extremely one-sided to a certain gender.
Contrary to popular belief, women have played a massive role in the engineering and development of products that we use today. To name a few, Mary Anderson created Windshield Wipers, Stephanie Kwolek discovered Kevlar, and Josephine Cochrane invented the Dishwasher.
We are lucky that during the twentieth century a lot has changed for women, but these ladies did not let suppression or opinion stop them from creating life changing inventions and innovative products. They continued to push the boundaries exponentially and paved the way for all women in the industry.
A question from my first interview at Rise Technical was, “How do you feel about working in a team of men?” From my view there was never going to be any issue. I grew up in Show Jumping, and equestrianism is one of the very few sports where men and women compete on a equal footing.
But it did give me an insight into the sector and industries I would later be working in and I was very intrigued to see how sparse the difference may be.
As a young women in today’s world, I am all about challenging stereotypes and smashing boundaries. Much like the female engineers of the past, I saw this environment as a challenge and working within a largely male dominated industry actually motivated me, to do even better within the sector. I wanted to prove to myself, and my male colleagues that I was deserving of a place at the table.
At school, I wasn’t given the option about recruitment as a career, so I entered this job with no preconceptions of what the environment would be like. I knew I could do the job, as I had been in sales ever since I left University, but the daunting worry was that when I first started calling clients who were most likely going to men, they would question what a women could possibly know about engineering.
Well, within my first week this doubt had quickly vanished and I soon started to own my desk and was confident to deal with any scenario a client could throw at me. This was largely down to the support of my manager, who is male, and the support of my female colleagues who are longstanding employees in the business.
We do have a long way to go to level the playing field across the world for women in recruitment and women in engineering roles, but we have made great strides. I am very lucky to work in a company where we are making the right steps and championing women while giving them opportunities in a sector that they may have usually shied away from.