The concept of “The Confidence Gap” is by no means a new conversation — there are many studies showing that, across all cultures, women are less self-assured than men. And success is as much based on confidence as it is competence.
Adding to that body of evidence is a recent survey of more than 1,000 university students in the United Kingdom, focused specifically on their tech ability. Conducted by KPMG UK and independent market research company High Fliers, it identified a worrying crisis in confidence among young women with regards to their digital skills.
The poll found that only 37 percent of young women are confident they have the tech skills needed by today’s employers, compared with 57 percent of young men. This is despite scoring on a par with their male counterparts when assessed on digital skills such as data manipulation and use of social media.
There is further evidence that this lack of confidence could be putting many young women off applying for jobs: 73 per cent of female respondents said they have not considered a graduate job in technology.
Aidan Brennan, KPMG’s head of digital transformation, believes businesses need to adapt their recruitment processes to reflect this issue, ensuring the selection process isn’t biased towards “those who shout about their capability loudest.”
“The issue here isn’t around competency – far from it – but rather how businesses understand the underlying capability of an individual and how to unlock it,” says Brennan. “I think this research highlights the work that needs to be done to show the next generation that when it comes to a career in tech, gender isn’t part of the equation.”