Pythian champions gender diversity in tech

Posted in: Pythian Life


At Pythian, we embody and value diversity in every form—in our religion (or lack thereof), our geography, our culture, and of course the location we’ve chosen for our home.  We deeply believe that the best teams are diverse and we are committed to increasing our diversity in all these areas.

We’ve been doing time-zone diversity for over a decade and we’ll keep doing it—we’re actually pretty good at it. In support of time zone diversity, we’ve become an industry leader in the art of creating high-performance teams by blending people from all over the world regardless of religion, culture, country of origin or residence. But now it’s time for us to turn our attention to gender diversity.

And so, with this note and video, I am proud to announce the Pythia Program. We’re going to increase the number of brilliant women who work with us and we will take a leadership position in a very important conversation to encourage more women to enter STEM fields and the tech industry.

Inspired by Microsoft, Twitter, Pinterest and Google, Pythian is the first technology company headquartered in Canada to announce its gender stats: 35 percent of the company’s leadership team are women, 27 percent of our managers are women and only 9 percent of technical roles at Pythian are held by women. Pythian also claims a Pythia Index of 56 percent.

The Pythia Index is the ratio of people in a business or in a team that are women leaders or roll up to a woman leader, as a percentage of total headcount. At Pythian the Pythia Index is 56%, which means that 56% of Pythianites are themselves women leaders or report up the org chart to a woman. Conversely, 44% of Pythian employees have zero women leaders all the way up the org chart from them.

So how do we currently compare to industry leaders? According to the most recent published numbers, Microsoft reported that women comprise 29.1 percent of its workforce, but only 16.6 percent work in technical positions and just 23 percent hold leadership roles. Twitter said women fill 10 percent of its technical jobs, with 21 percent in leadership. And women Googlers account for 17 percent of the search giant’s tech jobs, while only 21 percent manage others. Industry averages among all surveyed major US tech firms are 15.6% of technical roles and 29.6% of leadership.*

With this announcement, I am challenging our business to surpass industry averages within no more than three years, and sooner if possible.

The Pythia Program is central to how we plan to realize the best possible talent mix. By acknowledging and strengthening our deliberate talent blending practices, we hope not only to garner interest from potential employees, but to encourage other businesses to set similar diversity goals. This is not a corporate social responsibility initiative, it’s good for business, and it’s good for the technology sector.

Under the Pythia program we will:

  • Continue to focus on eliminating any unconscious gender biases in our recruiting and management practices.
  • Actively promote Pythian as a diversity-focused company so we can get more than our fair share of the top female leaders and tech talent.
  • Help build our future pipeline of female leaders and tech talent by working with and supporting organizations who have programs to encourage more women to go into tech.

This project is very important to me personally and I’ll continue to blog on the subject in the future.


Discover more about the Pythia Program.




Interested in working for Pythian? Check out our open positions.

About the Author

As Pythian’s Chief Executive Officer, Paul leads this center of excellence for expert, outsourced technical services for companies whose systems are directly tied to revenue growth and business success. His passion and foresight for using data and technology to drive business success has helped Pythian become a high-growth global company with over 400 employees and offices in North America, Europe, and Asia. Paul, who started his career as a data scientist, founded Pythian when he was 25 years old. In addition to driving the business, Paul is a vocal proponent of diversity in the workplace, human rights, and economic empowerment. He supports his commitment through Pythian’s hiring and retention practices, his role as board member for the Basic Income Canada Network, and as a supporter of women in technology.

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