Is the corporate girl aesthetic the answer to getting women into tech?
Whether you love it or hate it, the “Corporate Girl” aesthetic is the it girl statement of 2022. But with STEM-centric hashtags gaining traction on social media platforms, could it also be a useful recruitment tool to get women into tech?
It is an undeniable fact that the world of work has been dramatically changed in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, with a new generation of young female workers stepping up to take their place in the corporate world. Simultaneously, the rise of the social media platform TikTok has created a new outlet for these women to share their outfits, WFH routines, and, most importantly, their experiences in the newly formed corporate landscape. But can this aesthetic be utilised by tech companies to increase female recruitment in their workforce? Yes, we believe it can.
Armed with their spinach green smoothies, membership to the 5 am club, and newly purchased designer totes, women who prescribe to the “Corporate Girl” aesthetic represent the new 80s girl boss but with a sleek oversized blazer instead of shoulder pads.
Members are usually in their early – mid-twenties and have high-paying entry-level jobs in traditional private sector industries such as tech, finance, and law. Through the use of TikTok, these women show their day-to-day lives in mini vlogs. Romanticising office perks like in-house gyms and free lunch, while also monopolizing on the newfound “hustle” culture with their 5 am starts and 12-hour days. Overall, showing a modern feminine enthusiasm for working life.
Where are the women?
Women only make up 28% of the workforce in science, technology, engineering, and maths industries, and when a typical STEM worker earns two-thirds more than those employed in other fields this presents a big problem for the overall gender pay gap and overall economic stability of women.
So why aren’t more women in STEM?
There are many reasons more women aren’t in STEM, with the 4 main being:
- Gender stereotypes painting STEM fields as masculine
- Male dominated cultures in STEM job roles can dissuade women from applying
- Maths anxiety
- Fewer female role models in STEM industries
However, with some accounts such as @madelineedwards identifying as a “women in tech” to her 23.6K followers, and #womenintech having over 350 million views, TikTok has shown that there is a wide female audience looking for content on the tech industry.
But how do we target them?
Recruiters are already using TikTok as a new avenue to reach new young employees in an innovative way, utilising the app’s highly collaborative nature to gain engagement with their brand. Easily done considering TikTok currently has over 1 billion active users worldwide, which includes employees, recent graduates, apprentices, and career changers. Creating a ready-made audience for open roles.
This active audience coupled with an aesthetic that puts working in corporate industries such as tech at the focus point creates an exciting mix for the industry as it further shifts the stereotype of “women in tech” to a more accessible viewpoint. Contesting the stereotypical male-dominated STEM-orientated workforce with a decidedly feminine edge and open credentials.
Taking hold of the trend
In order to get the new generation of female workers into STEM you have to move away from the traditional recruitment tactics as these further the current male stereotypes, and instead reach applicants in a style and platform that they engage with; that’s where the TikTok Corporate girl aesthetic comes in.
At its heart, TikTok is a collaborative platform used for storytelling and sharing experiences. So being as authentic and people-orientated as possible is the best way to gain organic traction. This is important as the Corporate Girl Aesthetic is based on the lives of actual working women and so basing the content on misinformation is a sure-fire way of missing the mark. After all, there’s no point in showing an employee wearing an Olaplex bun and oversized Zara blazer if that’s against the company’s dress code.
To do this, ask employees to document their everyday life and romanticise the things they enjoy the most, creating engaging content that will resonate with future applicants more so than the traditional job application on your website. Videos showing everyday tasks, the office environment, and the corporate culture will give applicants an authentic idea of your workplace while showing your human side.
- Use trending hashtags
Using trending hashtags that relate to your content gives you more chance of landing on an applicant’s “for you” page. Try tags such as #tech #corporategirl #womeninstem #dayinmylife to get started.
- Keep it consistent
With so many accounts on the scene, businesses need to keep their posts consistent and regular in order to keep the audience engaged. The easiest way to do this is through a brand strategy as this will allow you to account for trends as well as key dates for your business. If you are unsure of how to approach your social media strategy you can always allocate a marketing budget and get help from professionals.
Overall, tapping into new trends such as the Corporate Girl aesthetic can attract new female applicants to male-dominated industries such as tech though breaking down the stereotypes and showing the best parts of your business. If you’re looking for help with your social media strategy and how to tap into trends, get in touch with our team.