The third Connecting Women in Technology (CWIT) event is taking place at Dell’s Cherrywood facility today, aiming to attract more female talent to the technology industry.
CWIT is a joint initiative from senior female employees from Dell, Microsoft, Accenture, Google, Facebook, HP and Ernst & Young.
It was set up in November 2009, aiming to ensure that multinationals have the right environment to grow. CWIT is focused on attracting the right quality of people into the technology industry to support Ireland’s competitiveness.
“The members of CWIT, Dell, Microsoft, Accenture, Google, Facebook, HP and Ernst & Young, base their success on having a diverse customer base and in order to meet our customers’ needs we need to have a workforce that represents them, a large proportion of which are women,” said Marie Moynihan, vice-president HR, Dell EMEA, and one of the founding members of CWIT.
“Part of our future health and growth is dependent on attracting the right kind of investment into Ireland.
“The future of such high-technology companies in Ireland is dependent on their ability to grow and develop and in order to do this we need a qualified pipeline of highly skilled and qualified graduates.
“Women are a critical part of that development. We have a role to play through supporting and driving initiatives that support a culture of innovation among students with a view to increasing the number of women entering the technology industry,” she said.
Today’s event focuses on how to win business, trends in the technology sector, such as cloud computing and the mobile sector, and networking in a global environment.
“The technological revolution is moving at a faster pace and having a greater impact than any other previous industrial revolutions,” said Fionnuala Meehan, director of Advertiser Operations for North & Central Europe at Google.
“Ten years ago, there was no Google, Facebook, Twitter, smartphones and no ‘cloud’. Yet all of these are changing the way we socialise and do business. They are opening up access to markets and are in themselves becoming whole new marketplaces that companies traditionally may not have targeted.
“The increasing sales of smartphones are a good indicator that the amount of time spent online will increase in the coming years. It is no longer necessary to be sitting at a desk working from a PC or Mac.
“Companies now need to be thinking ‘mobile’ and how they are going to develop a mobile internet presence that will allow them to capture customers ‘on the move’.
“If you are not thinking about the technology of tomorrow, and how it will impact your customers’ lives you will get left behind by your competitors. In these challenging economic times, using all the tools at your disposal to reach customers and generate revenues is a key issue for all businesses,” she said.
Photo: Orna Holland, head of EMEA staffing at Facebook; Siobhan O’Dowd of HP; Michelle Abbey, human resources director for Ireland at Ernst & Young; and Marie Moynihan, vice-president Global Talent Acquisition at Dell EMEA, at the CWIT event