Tags: Forschung, Firmeninternes, Intern Team

Equal opportunities in applied research

With the program "FEMtech Career", the FFG promotes the career development of women in research-based companies.

In the last 2 years, we have intensively dealt with the topics of "advancement of women in technology" and "diversity" and talked about our experiences in an interview with FFG.


The IT company nextsoft IT GmbH has taken advantage of the talent promotion programs FEMtech Career and FEMtech Career Check for SMEs. In the interview, Managing Director Karl Platzer talks about what equal opportunities mean to him and what has changed as a result of the projects.


What prompted you to take action in the area of equal opportunities? Equal opportunity has a high priority in our company. My wife and I run the company together, and starting a family has confronted us personally with issues related to work-life balance. We also believe that diversity is of great benefit to our company. Therefore, as a team, we try to meet the needs of our employees as well as possible.


Barbara and Karl Platzer © nextsoft


What measures have you been able to implement through the two funded projects so far? On the one hand, we have worked out many organizational measures that support our flexible working time models, such as a new format for regular team meetings, annual employee discussions and regular workshops on current topics. On the other hand, we have rethought our website in order to present the culture we live internally to the outside world as well and thus increasingly attract new employees. We also worked intensively on making it easier for new employees to join the company and drew up guidelines that are seen as very valuable, and not only by our new employees. We were supported in this by our management consultant Maria Moser-Simmill.


What has changed for the women in your company? - And what for the men? What positive developments do you see in general? Women and men in the company regularly give us positive feedback on the measures we have been able to implement as part of the FEMtech projects. As an IT company, we have a higher proportion of men in the company due to the nature of the industry. However, our male employees do not perceive the implemented measures as promoting women, which could even put them at a disadvantage. On the contrary, they and their female colleagues seize the opportunity to help shape their working environment and make positive changes. In general, the team has grown closer together during the project and understanding for each other has increased. We also receive a lot of positive feedback on our newly designed website from applicants, customers and interested parties.


Question for employee Sabine Hüthmayr: What has changed for you personally as a result of the measures and where do you see changes in the company? In the course of the project, I received coaching. This has helped me to have more confidence in myself. My tasks have also changed during the project. I now take on more responsibility for research and customer projects. I find the newly introduced staff appraisals very positive. Here we discuss wishes and goals and consider together how we can best implement them.


Is there anything else you would like to say on the subject of equal opportunities or pass on to other companies? I can only advise everyone to get to grips with the issue of equal opportunities. The topic should be used to shape a promising future for girls and boys. This requires good role models, who can be made visible as part of this support program.


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