women sitting and laughing

DigitALL on International Women's Day: 3 ways clever, not complex, tech can help EVERYONE harness the benefits of technology

Published on 3 mins Last updated

International Women's Day this year celebrates those advancing technology through innovation and digital education, as well as shining a light on the ongoing exclusion of women and girls from the digital world.

Now as much as I hate International Women's Day (because surely in this day and age it shouldn't still have to be a 'thing'!), the fact that technology is often so complex it excludes rather than includes undermines technical mastery not just for women — but also for a much wider audience.

The digital gender gap

The UN estimates that the current gender disparity in digital technology access results in $1 trillion in lost Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to low- and middle- income countries every year.

The reasons for this range from poor access to education (and therefore limited access to tech and the opportunity to develop their digital skills), to 'nerdy strutting' (my personal favorite lol), where male techies apparently live to show off their elite wizardry, putting the rest of us mere mortals off trying to improve our own understanding.

But, without doubt, technology should be for the many, not the few, so should companies such as ours approach software development differently to address this? I would say yes...

3 ways more user-friendly tech can change the world

1.Language that includes can break down barriers

How many times have you sat in a meeting at work where people have been batting around acronyms that mean absolutely nothing to you, and you're too ashamed to ask what they mean? This is never more true than in the tech industry where software engineers love to use acronyms which can sometimes make you feel like you're being excluded from a secret conversation (hence we created our no-nonsense glossary to demystify these terms!).

Unless there is a more accessible, common language the 'us' and 'them' approach is likely to prevail — to the detriment of the end users or those tasked with trying to articulate their needs.

2.Solutions that are clever, not complex, are more accessible

As much as I love technology, sometimes it can feel as if things are just plain complicated for no reason. Tech solutions need to be clever, not complex!! Complicated usually comes with a hefty price tag too which can put all manner of people off trying to use it — not just women and girls.

Using tools that don't annoy your team or give them the impression that their work is being made more difficult than it needs to be is considerably simpler.

3.User-friendly software makes everyone's lives easier

How annoying is it when you finally learn how to use something and then an update or upgrade means all the functionality is reorganized or modified? It drives me bonkers ever time I have to upgrade my phone or go into my local supermarket and they've reorganized all the shelves, just to make me comb the aisles in increasing desperation to get me to buy new products!

Call me crazy but shouldn't technology just work?! Even in our industry some load balancers (that's the software we sell) are so complicated you need to hire a qualified 'expert' to make any changes to them!! That's definitely not what I call user-friendly...


Without a more inclusive approach to software development and technology access to the digital world will remain hampered. Thankfully, we are increasingly seeing acknowledgement in the tech industry that using simplified IT solutions actually de-risks digital ecosystems. So maybe it's time to also acknowledge that simplified technology can also broaden the horizons of those using it...?

A woman in tech?

Check out our open roles