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Celebrating women in IT

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Philippa Winram, Business Intelligence Manager at Pronto Software, has been with the company for 18 years and loves working at Pronto. In celebration of International Women’s Day this week, Philippa shares her top tips for women working in IT.

You can have it all
When I started working at Pronto Software 18 years ago, I had a young family and the company was very supportive of me as a working mother. I found that you can have a family and a successful career but you need to get organised and have a very disciplined life and a disciplined house. My husband and I were very focused on our careers and having a disciplined house did not hurt our three children.

I was a better mother because I was working as it forced me to make decisions faster. As I was so busy I didn’t have time to ‘sweat the small stuff’ and I believe that attitude helped my children to succeed in life. My children look back now and say to me, how did you do it mum? At the time it seems like everything is happening all at once, and you need to accept that and deal with it as it comes.

You will catch up
I took 10 years off to have children as there was no child minding at the time. When I left work everyone had programmable calculators and when I came back everyone had a computer. I thought I was never going to be able to get the hang of it! I took small steps and learnt the computer gradually and in no time I was able to catch up.

When I went back to work I got such a buzz about working with people again, using my brain and talents for analytical purposes. I found that I loved working even more after having children then when I worked before. My daughters have now had children and experienced the same feeling when they went back to work.

The IT industry is full of potential
The IT industry is fabulous for women because there is a large range of job types. At one end of the scale are the people-focused jobs and at the other end are the technology-focused jobs. At the technology end it’s very focused on teamwork, which is generally suited to women as we are naturally good collaborators and problem solvers.

The best thing about the IT industry is women can find a job that will fit in with their family. Pronto offers flexible working options such as allowing parents to start early or leave early to pick up their kids. This has been embraced by working parents in all branches.

Women are a vital part of the IT industry
Women are a vital part of the architecture and ecosystem of the IT industry. For example, 60% of bloggers are women and most social media users are female.

Don’t give up on your daughter’s education in the science and maths fields and encourage them to succeed!

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