When Jess found herself feeling stuck in a job she didn't love, she worried being a mother could hold her back from a career change to tech. In reality, being a mother helped her be resilient and organised enough to secure a role she would never have expected...
By Sparta Global Assistant Trainer, Jess Olden
Being a mother often comes with its own set of external and internal stigmas. Unfortunately, some companies still view women with children as less reliable and can be more cautious about hiring women before their thirties who they suspect may soon have families of their own. A US Bureau of Labour report found that women account for less than a third of the workforce in tech and - even when they show a strong interest in tech – many are still hesitant to change careers and explore other opportunities.
My journey as mother in tech
I went through a similar battle within myself. With a science background, I worked as a physiotherapist in Belgium and Luxembourg before moving to the UK to work for a financial services company. I struggled quite a lot and felt stuck and unhappy in a finance job with very little growth opportunities.
So, I decided to be brave. I gave myself four to six months to upskill in my free time by taking several online coding courses and looking for a tech job.
After being accepted into Sparta Global’s program, I discovered a passion for data, and in particular for cloud engineering. Having to learn almost everything from scratch was challenging, and I had to study during the weekends to meet the training standards.
While I won't deny that it was a difficult journey, I made sure to organise my time effectively to minimise the impact on my family life. I went on to graduate as a Junior Data Engineer and shortly after I was offered the role of training assistant within the Sparta Academy. It was something I never thought I would be able to do in the tech industry!
Why women should take the jump into tech
Being a mother should not be seen as a disadvantage in the workplace. Rather, it has helped me develop skills such as resilience, focus, and organisation. Having less time for myself has forced me to work more efficiently and productively. Working in tech doesn’t require you to have a specific brain (like I thought previously) or natural-born skills. It just requires curiosity and hard work.
The technology industry can offer a lot of benefits when it comes to work-life balance. Tech companies are more willing to offer remote or flexible jobs to their employees – something particularly beneficial for parents. Most importantly, this sector is still growing and offers a wide range of jobs to choose from with plenty of growth opportunities.
If you are a mum who is feeling stuck in a job that you're not passionate about, or you want to go back to work and you are curious about the tech world, I encourage you to take action. It's never too late to upskill yourself and find that spark that may be missing in your life.
Sparta Global offers equal opportunities across technology training and careers. Whether you are a career changer of mum looking to return to work, our roles are open to you. Check out our open roles here, or explore the all-women Athena Academy.