Women in the labor force have reached an all-time high of nearly 74.5 million. In honor of women’s history month, IT executive Monica Eaton-Cardone highlights the great strides made by women in finance/technology plus areas for future growth.
(Tampa Bay, FL) March 26, 2018 – The latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) figures reveal that the American labor force comprised a record number of women in 2016: more than 74.4 million.(1) While BLS and other reports demonstrate the considerable progress women have made over the years, they also show there is still more ground to cover before females attain professional parity with their male counterparts.(1–6) In honor of Women’s History Month (March 1–31), Monica Eaton-Cardone—an IT executive specializing in risk management and fraud prevention—delves into the data to uncover women’s accomplishments and opportunities, as well as potential pathways to success for women in technology and financial technology (FinTech).
According to BLS findings, women represent 46.8% of the U.S. labor force and account for more than half (51.5%) of all management, professional and related occupations, including 54.7% of business/financial operations jobs and 57.0% of professional and related careers. Yet they remain underrepresented in leadership and technology roles, filling just 27.3% of chief executive positions; 25.5% of computer and mathematical occupations; and 14.2% of architecture and engineering jobs.(1) A United Nations study of women in politics revealed the United States ranks 104th worldwide, with females holding just 1 in 5 U.S. senator and representative seats, while some nations have closer to 50/50 representation; in Rwanda, Bolivia, Cuba, Iceland and Nicaragua, women hold 45% or more of parliamentary seats.(2)
Other research reflects stagnant growth or instances where women have gained ground only to backslide. In a study of startup firms backed by venture capital, the proportion with a female founder rose steadily between 2009 and 2012, from 9% to 17%; however, that percentage has stubbornly remained around 17% for the past five years.(3) In the global banking industry, women hold less than 20% of board seats and 2% of CEO positions.(4) Across the entire Fortune 500, the number of women chief executives climbed 50% between 2016 and 2017, from 21 to 32 CEOs;(5) but as of January 2018, that number slipped to 27, and will drop to 24 by April.(6)
“Women have made tremendous strides over the past few decades, yet it’s clear there is still a way to go before we collectively achieve our true potential,” said Eaton-Cardone, who is co-founder and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Chargebacks911 and Chief Information Officer (CIO) of Global Risk Technologies. “While some may feel discouraged by the slow pace of progress, there are many success stories, inspiring examples and promising signs of change across virtually every industry. In honor of Women’s History Month, I feel it is important to spotlight those who are proving just how exceptional women can be as leaders and innovators, and to recognize those who are paving a path to success.”
Though women represent a relatively small proportion of Fortune 500 CEOs, there are three who currently helm companies in the top 50: Mary Barra of General Motors, Ginni Rometty of IBM and Indra Nooyi of PepsiCo, which rank 8, 32 and 44 respectively.(6) Last November, a group of women venture capitalists launched FemaleFounders.org to encourage more women to start companies and to connect female founders and investors.(7) In addition, the UK Treasury established a Women in Finance Charter to prepare female talent for leadership; to date, more than 160 banking and finance firms have committed to have women fill at least 30% of leadership roles by 2021.(8)
Eaton-Cardone urges more women to take advantage of opportunities in the technology and FinTech fields. On average, women earn 81.9% of men’s income, and in some cases, much less; but many tech careers offer closer salary parity—female computer and information systems managers earn 95.7% of what men do, and female computer support specialists and operations research analysts earn 94.1%.(1) And while traditional finance firms may be slow to promote women, many tech-savvy females have excelled in FinTech. UK-based Innovate Finance published a Women in FinTech Powerlist last November featuring nearly 370 female leaders—including founders, CEOs, chairs, directors and others—who represent game-changing talent in this burgeoning field.(9) Among them are NASDAQ CEO Adena Friedman, Capital One UK CEO Amy Lenander, Deutsche Bank Head of Innovation Elly Hardwick, BBVA Head of Open Innovation Marisol Menendez, and Eaton-Cardone as co-founder of The Chargeback Company, Chargebacks911’s European headquarters.
“I’m honored to be recognized as one of FinTech’s power players, and I intend to do my part to support the advancement of women in business, finance and technology,” pledged Eaton-Cardone. “At Global Risk Technologies, Chargebacks911 and The Chargeback Company, we aim to have females account for at least 25% of our technology workforce within the next 10 years. To achieve this goal, we will offer training and support to those interested in entering the field and promote those with proven leadership skills and technical abilities. I am eager for us to be a catalyst for change, creating new opportunities for women to prove their worth in the modern workforce.”
Monica Eaton-Cardone welcomes the chance to discuss opportunities for women in business, technology and FinTech at upcoming industry events. She has been a featured panelist at TRUSTECH, the IATA World Financial Symposium and TRANSACT, and is also available for interviews and future speaking engagements. For more information, visit http://monicaec.com.
About Monica Eaton-Cardone:
Monica Eaton-Cardone is an accomplished entrepreneur, speaker, author and industry thought leader who is internationally recognized for her expertise in risk management, chargeback mitigation, fraud prevention and merchant education. Eaton-Cardone found her calling as an entrepreneur when she sold her first business at the age of 19. She later became an eCommerce merchant; and after grappling with chargebacks and fraud, she took it upon herself to develop a comprehensive, robust solution that combined agile technologies and human insights. Today, Eaton-Cardone’s innovations are helping thousands of organizations achieve sustainable growth, and she continues to pioneer loss-prevention best practices as CIO of Global Risk Technologies and COO of Chargebacks911. Eaton-Cardone is a champion of women in IT and business leadership, and aims to inspire the next generation of young innovators through her nonprofit organization, Get Paid for Grades. Get to know her at www.monicaec.com.
- S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Women in the Labor Force: A Databook; November 2017; Tables 1, 11 and 18.
- Inter-Parliamentary Union and UN Women. Women in Politics: 2017; map/infographic published April 27, 2017.
- Teare, Gené. “The Portion of VC-Backed Startups Founded by Women Stays Stubbornly Stagnant”; TechCrunch; January 15, 2018.
- International Monetary Fund. “Chart of the Week: Banking on Women—A Case for More”; September 19, 2017.
- Zarya, Valentina. “The 2017 Fortune 500 Includes a Record Number of Women CEOs”; Fortune; June 7, 2017.
- Fortune “These Are the Women CEOs Leading Fortune 500 Companies”; Fortune; June 7, 2017; updated January 2018.
- Miller, Ron. “Female Founders Group Wants to Encourage More Women Entrepreneurs to Start Businesses”; TechCrunch; February 27, 2018.
- Finch, Gavin and David Hellier. “U.K. Lawmaker Says 33 Firms Yet to Sign Women in Finance Charter”; Bloomberg; February 15, 2018.
- Innovate Finance. Women in FinTech: Powerlist 2017; November 16, 2017.
Karla Jo Helms