“Meet cool women, do cool sh*t.”
Fresh from the Calgary startup oven is Toast, a membership-based women’s collective founded “to flip the hiring dynamic in favour of women in tech.”
While tech talent is in currently in the driver’s seat, the founder behind Toast believes there remains a gap between sexes. Women representation in tech is up, but stark differences still remain, especially in technical roles.
Toast co-founder April Hicke likens her startup to Tech Ladies, a female-focused tech talent platform conceived of in a New York City cafe in 2015 which now boasts a billion-dollar valuation.
“It’s wild we didn’t yet have anything like this in Canada,” says Hicke.
She notes that her company’s recently launched waitlist is already several hundred Canadians long.
Hicke’s mission is simple: she wants to help women “do the work that they want, for the pay they deserve, and with a community that supports them.”
To accomplish this, her company must be “more than a job board.”
“We offer advocacy, education, white-glove placements, and a peer community that set women up for success and control over their careers,” the startup states online.
It also handles backend details, including negotiating, contracting, and payment.
“It’s essential that we continue to invest in the recruitment and development of diverse perspectives,” Tech and People Network chief executive Stephanie Hollingshead stated recently, adding that “the sector is on a trajectory of real change.”
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