There are two trends that are shaping the tech industry and the jobs outlook in the Bay Area. First, there is a big focus on cultivating and recruiting the best talent out there, and second, there is a significant focus on diversity in technology companies. These two areas are closely related and inter-connected. Finding talent is made more difficult when the talent pool considered is limited. By broadening the pool of talent to include people outside of traditional networks and sources, more resources become available.
When it comes to diversity, I am optimistic about the outlook of employment and hiring in the tech industry. I’m optimistic because I am seeing more women and ethnic minorities start their own companies. We are also seeing more women and ethnic minorities serve as CEOs of large global corporations and world-class technology companies — Kenneth I. Chenault of American Express, Kenneth C. Frazier of Merck, and Roger W. Ferguson, Jr. of TIAA-CREF, Ursula Burns of Xerox, Marissa Mayer of Yahoo, Meg Whitman of Hewlett-Packard, and Virginia Rometty of IBM, to name a few.
According to a recent survey from Fenwick and West, “Gender Diversity in Public Companies in Silicon Valley,” we’ve made progress in the past two decades when it comes to women in leadership roles in Silicon Valley public companies. However, we have to remember that diversity within an organization doesn’t just happen overnight. It takes leadership and a strong tone at the top. Right now we are seeing a lot of leaders engaging in the diversity discussion, asking the right questions, and taking action. While I don’t necessarily agree with diversity quotas, I do think setting targets are important, and focused activities and initiatives can help a team execute and achieve their objectives.
Shellye Archambeau is the CEO of MetriStream, an award-winning American Governance Risk and Compliance cloud apps company headquartered in Palo Alto. a graduate of the Wharton School of Business, Ms. Archambeau has received several prestigious awards and honors, including named the “No. 2 Most Influential African-American in Technology” by Business Insider. She currently serves on the board of directors for the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, Nordstrom and Verizon Communications, Inc.
Randy Yagi is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. In 2012, he was awarded a Media Fellowship from Stanford University. His work can be found on Examiner.com Examiner.com.