Executive recruitment company Monroe Consulting Group Philippines was proud to have attended ‘Women Techmakers 2016: Our Time to Lead’ at De La Salle University in Manila on March 19. The important summit, sponsored by Google Developer Group (GDG) Philippines in partnership with Accenture, KLab, PLDT Innolab and others, was dedicated to International Women’s Month and women involved in the rapidly expanding technology sectors.
Pamela Anne Macariola, a consultant with Monroe’s technology division that focuses on the recruitment of technology executives, said the day-long summit featured a number of speakers, discussions and talks focused on a range of issues, from those purely involving technology to others involving the empowerment of woman and breaking barriers within the industry.
“It was great to see so many accomplished female technology professionals and business leaders who are contributing and achieving so many things in the industry,” Ms Macariola said. “More and more women are breaking down traditional barriers and are starting to connect, create and lead the technology revolution that is helping to advance humanity.”
Running since 2012, Women Techmakers is Google's global program and brand for women in technology and is dedicated to empowering women in technology through increased visibility, community and resources. Google prides itself on its inclusive working environment, a key part of which has been empowering women to pursue their dreams and build tools that change the world.
“Having a diversity of perspectives and ideas leads to better decision-making, more relevant products, and makes the industry much more interesting,” Google has stated. “We believe that by creating the right environments, programs and policies, women in tech are better positioned to drive transformational change in the industry and beyond.”
Jelly Ruth Villaraza, who heads Monroe Philippines’ Technology Division, said the company, which operates in emerging economies in the Asia-Pacific, was proud of its own internal recruitment policies that focused on hiring consultants from diverse backgrounds, but which actively encouraged its client companies to adopt similar policies.
Monroe has long warned that a failure to create more culturally diverse and inclusive working environments can have significantly detrimental effects on their businesses, including driving up the salaries of the people they hire. This is particularly true in the technology sector, where there is a shortage of talent in the marketplace.
Ms Macariola said highlights included presentations from Dr. Merlin Suarez, the world-renowned Dean of the College of Computer Studies at the host university, who spoke about developing socially intelligent human-machine interfaces, and Luna Cruz, the creative director and co-founder of Altitude Games, who spoke about being a female game designer in a male-dominated sector, who spoke about opportunities in social media.
She said other highlights included presentations by Ellaine de Guzman, the digital head of CNN Philippines, who spoke about women working in the digital space, and academic Charibeth K. Chenga, co-founder of SENTi Techlabs, Inc., a tech start-up that monitors social media by understanding the dynamic and rapidly evolving Filipino language.
“Monroe has placed many dozens of women in senior roles with leading multinational or national companies, mainly in software development jobs,” she said. “Males and females have about the same number of profiles in the marketplace and clients are not likely to have gender preferences.”