SEATTLE, Dec. 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA), a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering a robust, equity-centered technology sector that empowers thriving communities, today celebrates Code Fellows, Amperity and Outreach as the winners of its first annual DEI Awards. WTIA recognized these three Seattle-based companies for advancing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) goals across their organizations.
"I'm incredibly proud to pay tribute to the hard work of Code Fellows, Amperity and Outreach today," said Yolánda Chase, Chief Diversity Officer, WTIA. "The impact of these three organizations goes far beyond their own four walls - they are paving the way for what the future of DEI programming can and should look like in all companies, of all sizes, everywhere."
Category: <50 Employees
Code Fellows, the Pacific Northwest's premier technical skills training academy, received the award for companies with fewer than 50 employees. To date, Code Fellows has allocated more than $4 million in scholarships to help over 1,600 students start careers in the tech industry, while the company's bias-free hiring platform allows employers to recruit and engage talented developers without revealing gender, race, and other identities to remove unintentional biases from hiring practices. Code Fellows also offers DEI-related monthly training for all staff.
"The simple truth is that technology is reshaping the modern world like nothing ever before seen. But who knows the tech well enough to set the direction in which we go? If we really want to see technology solve the most pressing problems of the future, we need a diverse technical workforce, supported by inclusive professional environments, with equitable power structures," said Brook Riggio, Vice President of Education, Code Fellows. "If we can ensure the future of technological power isn't just in the hands of a white elite, but made available to all, black and white, Latinx and indengenous, female, male, non-binary, queer and straight… then we can address the most meaningful challenges of the current age."
Category: 51-250 Employees
Amperity, an enterprise customer data platform built for customer-centric brands, was honored in the 51-250 employees category, after meeting its recruitment goal of growing the company's overall representation of people of color by 10 percent and tracking toward its goal of a 10 percent increase in company-wide representation of women. Amperity also established a Diversity Committee to evolve company culture to become more inclusive, and ensured at least one woman, person of color, and/or LGBTQ+ individual be among the interviewers for every candidate.
"At Amperity, our people are our biggest advantage," said Kabir Shahani, co-founder and CEO of Amperity. "Fostering a culture where each team member can bring their unique and authentic self is not a secondary concern for us; it is a priority. A diverse, inclusive and equitable culture cannot grow by accident - it's a result of empowering employees and championing their values. We are honored to be recognized by the Washington Technology Industry Association and look forward to continuing our DE&I work."
Category: 251+ Employees
By embedding DEI principles into key people practices - including performance reviews and onboarding - sales engagement platform Outreach was recognized in the 251+ employees category. Outreach created a more inclusive culture through training and education, formed nine employee resource groups and established a DEI working council and charter. Further, the company updated its values statement with more inclusive language and partnered with diversity-focused recruiting and internship organizations to counter bias.
"Diversity is our strength – at Outreach as a company, in the technology and sales industries, as a country and as a global community," said Manny Medina, co-founder and CEO of Outreach. "Fostering a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace has been a foundational principle for Outreach since day one. We want everyone to feel comfortable to come to work as their real selves every day. As a Latino founder who immigrated from Ecuador, it's something I think about every single day. Not only is advancing DEI the right thing to do, but as we build our company and leadership team we are realizing significant value in having different points of view at the table. It's an honor to be recognized by the Washington Technology Industry Association, and we look forward to inviting and empowering an even more diverse workforce in the future."
Code Fellows, Amperity and Outreach were celebrated at the first annual WTIA DEI Summit, which convened C-suite, diversity, HR and community engagement leaders in the tech industry to share best practices and lessons learned in advancing diversity objectives during a time of increased awareness and accountability to racial justice. The event also commemorated the first year of WTIA's efforts to eradicate systems of inequities in the tech sector, led by the Anti-Racism in Tech Pact. WTIA staff reviewed nominations based on the strength of their responses to questions, focusing on detail, explication of measurable goals, and impact, as measured by reported engagement, etc.
The Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA) is a consortium that includes a not-for-profit member trade association, a not-for-profit tech apprenticeship intermediary (Apprenti), and a for profit corporation providing business services (HRBI). The organization's mission is to foster a robust, equity-centered technology sector that empowers thriving communities. We recruit technology companies and allies that view diversity as a competitive advantage, value collaboration as essential to sustainable growth, and fully embrace the opportunity to partner with and empower the communities in which we operate.
SOURCE Washington Technology Industry Association