Sparta Global on Developing a D&I Strategy and why this is important
by Gaia Caruso
What did you study at university and how did you start your career in D&I?
I completed a Bachelor’s degree in Humanities with a focus on international history at University of Pavia. During my final year at university, I received a scholarship to spend a semester at Northern Arizona University (NAU), where I worked on research related to gender justice and employment inequalities. I moved to London in 2013 to complete a Master’s degree at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), where I supported and produced research in the field of equal opportunities, social mobility and cultural theory. During my time at LSE, I became more and more interested in the digital sector and in how tech companies can remove barriers for women and under-represented groups in industry. In 2017 I joined Sparta Global, a fantastic organization that prepares and delivers diverse digital talent to work with blue-chip clients in multiple sectors in the UK. At Sparta Global, I had the opportunity to set up and develop a Talent function around university partnerships. This role gave me a platform to work with over 60 universities across the country, connect with inspiring people and D&I networks and engage with young women looking to start a career in STEM. More recently, Sparta Global’s historic commitment to equality in tech has been recognized on a larger scale and we have now launched a dedicated Diversity & Inclusion function which I am helping develop.
Sparta Global is a leading diverse employer in the UK and has been named “Female Grad Employer of the Year” at the Women in Tech awards 2018. Diversity for us is about empowering individuals by valuing and appreciating what makes us different from one another. This means recognizing and addressing the variety and richness of human experience within our company. Aspects of social and political identity such as culture, gender, ethnicity, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and education mean that we all have different experiences and perspectives in life. By exploring these dimensions, we celebrate and empower individual voices and we place positive values on our differences. Inclusion is about creating a sense of belonging. We believe that inclusion is the key to innovation, creativity, quality and high performance in our company’s ecosystem and we find that sense of belonging among our employees has a direct impact on business performance. By fostering both diversity and inclusion practices in our community life, we nurture idea generation, co-creation and collaboration to prepare digital talent able to work in increasingly agile ways. Working both internally and with our clients, some of our current D&I projects include collaborating with local and international equal opportunities forums, conducting research around women in STEM, inclusive leadership, social mobility and neurodiversity and building relationships with industry leaders to help them deliver positive change.
Technology is shaping the world we live in and the world future generations will inherit. Now more than ever we need richness and complexity of thought around the table to fuel meaningful projects. We live in a decisive moment of history. A time of global warming, social and political transformations, economic shocks, new media, big data, cross-border financial and trading dynamics that have the power to both connect or separate people. Technology sits at the very heart of these transformative forces as it is fueling unprecedent changes in the way society operates. It is through technology that we create and share information. Through technology we produce and implement new ideas. Through technology we develop products that will impact the lives of millions of individuals across the planet. Through technology we can tackle pandemic diseases, improve access to resources, make policies, navigate inequalities and create new means for communities to flourish. Simply put, the future is being built by tech. With this in mind, we cannot take for granted the importance of diversity and inclusion in unlocking perspectives that will help us write that future.