Only 6% Women in Desktop Support?!?

I posted a job announcement for 2 part-time technical support specialist positions on Friday evening, and by this evening–72 hours later–had over 80 responses, with more coming every minute. What was astounding to me wasn’t the overwhelming response (okay, maybe that was a little astounding), but the complete lack of women in the applicant pool.

Of the 80+ applicants, only 5 were easily identifiable as women. That’s 6 percent!! Even factoring in the couple of Asian names that I am uncertain about, the applicant pool is less than 10% female. Why?

Are women not suffering the same unemployment rates that others are at the moment? Are they less interested in part-time work? Or are women simply not well represented in the desktop support area of IT? Let’s hope if this is the case, it’s not reflective of IT overall. I know at my previous institution, there was only one woman on a desktop support team of ~13 (not including the female manager of the team).

I’m disappointed, and disturbed by this response. I’m a woman. I’d love to hire more (qualified) women. But with only 5 in the applicant pool, what’s a diversity-loving CIO to do?

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Update 2/10/10: I now have more than 100 responses to the ad, and no more women. So now the numbers are looking like 5/100+. Geesh!

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