The gaming industry is in need of workers. According to recent data from Indeed, there were more than 3,700 jobs in gambling and nearly 1,900 in sports betting. Although not all jobs require tech skills to be successful, virtually all of them require STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) training. Now, gaming companies are working diligently to grab top talent before it can be captured by Google, Microsoft, and others.
Girls Who Code, Gaming Companies Form Alliances
At the Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas, panelists from gaming companies said that it was becoming increasingly difficult for them to attract talent.
“We’re seeing candidates get three offers by the time we get to them,” stated Ashley Pastino, Penn Interactive’s talent acquisition manager, during the G2E panel discussion on “Talent Challenges: How to Find and Develop Good Staff in a Brave New World.”
Girls Who Code is a non-profit organization that provides skilled workers to gaming companies. It aims at closing the gender gap in STEM opportunities and technology. Aristocrat Gaming took part in a virtual hiring event sponsored and sponsored by Girls Who Code in September 2021.
Hector Fernandez of Aristocrat Americas explained that Aristocrat’s participation will help increase the number of young, talented women who are interested in the gaming industry. Fernandez shares that in a world with labor shortages, it’s a race for talent and it is crucial to ensure organizations are creating the right partnerships to get the right people into the doors.
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) reports that 72% of STEM jobs are held by men. According to the AAUW, the greatest gender gaps are found in the highest-paying fields of engineering and computer science.
Girls Who Code was founded in 2012 to address gender gaps in STEM. They sponsor club programs for grades 3-12 and summer programs for high-school students. Girls Who Code supports 10,000 girls in 42 US states, according to its website. This is the same number who earn computer science degrees each year.
Education Needed for Greater Diversity
Although diversity is becoming more common in the gaming industry, Entain’s head for diversity, inclusion & equality, Sophie Hawley, believes there’s still much to be done. Education is the key to creating more opportunities, Hawley believes.
Hawley states that young women abandon science and technology subjects while they are still in school or between school and university. The result is that while half of the global workforce are women and only 15% of scientists, technologists and engineers are female, it means that half of the world’s workforce is made up of women.
This is a huge waste of talent and a decrease in diversity, even though we know diversity works. It is time to equalize the playing field and give everyone equal access to technology.
Hawley says Entain partnered with Girls Who Code in March 2021. They provided financial support for their coding programs as well as pastoral support to their alumni. EnTrain was also launched by Entain in November. This initiative aims to improve access to technology and diversity with the goal of reaching 1,000,000 people worldwide by 2030.
Global Gaming Women was founded in 2016 and has been focused on women’s career opportunities in the gaming industry. It hosts webinars, networking events, and training programs. Girls Who Code is essential to ensure girls have a pathway to STEM careers and the gaming industry, Stratford states.