Only 7% of women reach the C-suite at Indian IT companies

Missing in action.
Missing in action.
Image: Reuters/Vivek Prakash
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Researchers may believe that having more woman employees results in higher revenue, but Indian technology firms don’t seem to care much about that.

Women make for only 34% of the total workforce in the industry, according to a recent report by hiring firm Belong. The gender ratio gets further skewed at senior levels and in specialised engineering roles.

Only 7% of women reach the C-suite at Indian IT companies, the report said.

“The biggest drop-off in pure numbers is after the first five years,” it said. “One obvious reason for this could be that women often take a break to start a family around this time in their lives, and many do not return to the workforce.”

Here’s what the drop-off looks like through the first 12 years of a professional’s career at an Indian tech firm:

What they do

Even the women who stick around are not found to be working on any path-breaking technologies.

About 45% of women who graduated from prestigious universities between 2005 and 2009 moved out of core engineering roles after close to eight years, according to the report.

“One of the possible reasons for the drop-off is women wanting to shift to less demanding roles with lesser responsibilities so that they are able to juggle between their family and work better,” Mohita Nagpal, a digital marketing manager at Belong who led this research, told Quartz.

Over 30% of woman engineers move to non-core jobs such as testing—incidentally testing itself faces redundancy due to automation. Others move to roles like marketing, product management, or consulting, according to Belong.