Back "SHI has a 45%-55% male to female ratio right now, which we're very, very proud of”

As the managing director of SHI UK, Donavan Hutchinson is focused on growing and developing the company, raising awareness of SHI within the UK market, and making significant investments in human resources. Given the impact of the COVID pandemic and Brexit on the national workforce, it would be easy to presume that growing SHI UK’s staff has been tough. In fact, Donavan believes these challenges have presented an opportunity for the company to invest in training new employees and offering those who have been laid off over the past few years a new career path. He has increased SHI’s head count for people development, training, human resources and the company’s approach to staff compensation, with over eighty people being hired so far.

Of course, given that SHI is recruiting people from a range of backgrounds, ensuring that every member of the workforce feels supported and included is crucial. This is why Donavan is passionate about WiSH!, which aims to celebrate women working within technology, to empower them to enter the industry, and recognise them, within the channel. This ethos, Donavan believes, stems from the fact that SHI is a women-owned company, putting it in a unique position to promote female talent from within.

Donavan recently became a board member of WiSH!, which he’s really proud of. While he believes that the IT sector is very male dominant, Donavan highlights the fact that SHI UK has a 45/55 male to female ratio as proof that gender balance is shifting within the industry. Going forward, Donavan thinks that by creating awareness of how technology impacts our everyday lives, and how both men and women use technology equally, will encourage more women to become interested in the IT industry. This extends to school curriculums, which teach students how to use technology better, how to code and also to embrace technology advances that are affecting our everyday lives.

"Gone are the days where the IT industry is a very male dominant. Our organisation, specifically in the UK, has a 45%-55% male to female ratio right now, which we're very, very proud of.”

This is part of a wider change in SHI UK’s approach to hiring individuals. During the hiring process, SHI considers diversity, inclusion, and equality within the workforce. Donavan cites the example of having a diverse range of recruitment interviewers as indicative of SHI’s all-encompassing approach to inclusion and diversity, employing the right people who can bring the right skill sets into the organisation, whether it is a language, a particular technical skill or resource that SHI needs to acquire.

The results of SHI’s increased focus on diversity are already bearing fruit. More women are entering into SHI’s technical teams, not just in the UK, but around the globe. The organisation has also seen more women enter the salesforce, which is encouraging, given the salesforce's usual male dominance.

Donavan believes this is key, because many employees start their career within SHI’s inside sales team. This, coupled with a very strong training and development platform that allows SHI to not only raise awareness, but to be able to train people to go into different areas of the business, will help improve diversity within the business.