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A collage of four Resideo's Female Leaders in the article.

Women in Tech: Resideo’s Female Leaders Share Their Stories

Resideo’s female information technology and engineering leaders bring awareness to their stories, challenges and successes, and give advice they have for women looking to enter the field.

Technology is all around us. It’s the glue that keeps businesses running, how we stay in touch with loved ones, and pass the time. It’s in the products that we buy. It keeps households warm when it’s cold out, and cool when it’s warm. It is in everything that we do. It’s a booming industry.

Although the tech industry has been evolving, it is still clearly a male-dominated field. The industry is expected to have 3.6 million computing-related jobs in the next decade, but today, women only make up 25% of the IT workforce in the US. STEM jobs are predicted to grow 8.8% through 2029, yet in engineering only 14% of women are engineers. 

Resideo wants to help change this by bringing awareness to our female information technology and engineering leaders' stories, challenges and successes, and sharing their advice with women looking to enter the field.

Samar Dajani-Brown, Senior Manager - Cyber Governance. Golden Valley, Minnesota, USA.

Samar is the Cybersecurity Governance Excellence and Compliance Leader for Resideo. Her cybersecurity team is responsible for both Resideo infrastructure and product development. Her team is responsible for policies and standards to ensure adequate security controls are in place, so that each product that leaves the Resideo production floor is safe and secure. She is also responsible for annual security awareness and training, risk management, and vendor management.

Samar’s passion for engineering and IT stemmed from her love of math and science as a kid. She doesn’t find herself unique in that matter, however she notices girls aren’t being encouraged to pursue these topics. “I think there are a bunch of young women, or young girls, who have those interests. I believe everybody should pursue their passions. If they’re passionate about science and engineering, nobody should stop them from pursuing the field.”

“Information technology is very diverse, there’s a lot of rewards for a career in information technology. If someone has that interest, regardless of gender, they should pursue it. It’s on us to make sure the doors open.”

Advice she has for girls entering the field and female colleagues is to: “Always better yourself; ensure that you keep up with technological advances, so that when it’s time for the next step, it is based on data, qualifications, and certifications." She recently finished a graduate certificate in cybersecurity from Harvard University.

Gayathri  Kumar - IT QAT Leader, Bangalore, India.

Gayathri is Resideo’s Quality and Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Leader. Her specialty is in quality control and automation. Her team tests each application Resideo uses for quality to ensure the employee and customer experiences are positive. She also assists with automation of day-to-day departmental tasks. Where she can automate to free up employee time, she does.

Gayathri believes that the more women we have in technology, and the different viewpoints they bring, the more understanding and well-rounded policies will develop in the field. She also believes that having support at home is necessary for women to be successful in a male-dominated field.

Gayathri grew up as the only girl in a traditional family with 16 brothers and was the first person in her family to go to college. She completed her engineering degree at the top of her class. She credits her family support system for her success and notes, as a woman in a new marriage and a new city, working in tech was challenging but rewarding.

She goes on to mention that the hours can be daunting, but they’re worth it. “It is the best field. The IT field has a flexibility that other fields don’t have. If you work hard, you can get into an IT role where no one cares how many hours that you work. They are just worried about the outcome. Nowhere else are you going to have the flexibility that IT has.”

Claudia Prieto's photo - Firmware Engineering Manager, Chihuahua, Maxico.

Claudia is Resideo’s Firmware Engineering Manager. Her team is responsible for developing and testing New Product Introduction projects for Resideo’s P&S Comfort products from a firmware perspective.

Growing up, Claudia has always been fascinated by how things work, and especially computers. “I so admired computers, that after a lot of begging and saving money, my parents helped me purchase a personal computer.” She knew from that moment that she had to have a technical career. In college, she pursued the engineering track. “The engineering and master’s degree was an obvious choice. I could combine it with my love for electronics and I ended up in the embedded systems world.”

“There were never a lot of women in engineering.” Claudia states she was the only women in her graduating master’s class, but she never let it bother her. “I never felt like something stopped me from going into engineering. My parents were always supportive. I had a couple of awkward experiences, but it’s something I laugh about now after the fact.” The one story that she can recall the most is when a close friend told her that engineering was not for women, as he was also pursuing a career in engineering.

However, that didn’t faze Claudia. Her take on why women are important in the technology industry: “There are men and women in the world, it makes sense to have them both represented in the technology world. In the end, having different perspectives and ways of doing things is enriching for any process or activity.”

“Engineering is fun. Don’t let other people tell you what you should be doing, there are times when doing what you want to do is enough. Keep learning, keep doing, because that’s the only path to success in engineering.”

Tracy polland - IT Directore, Motherwell, Scotland, UK.

Tracy is the Infrastructure Operations Director within Resideo. She is responsible for all IT infrastructure, which includes servers, databases, backup and storage. She’s also responsible for network and voice operations. Her primary focus is to ensure day-to-day business remains operational and potential problems are addressed proactively before there is any business disruption.

Tracy’s love for information technology stemmed from her father, who worked in the field. When Tracy was at university, her father’s associate was looking for a summer intern at his startup. Tracy took the job thinking it was possibly going to be an entry data clerk position and instead managed the business. Tracy ran the company, all while processing everything through the ERP system. “I became what we called an MIS officer, and I absolutely believed at the time that MIS stood for miscellaneous because I did everything. It was, in fact, an acronym for Management Information Systems Officer. "

Her career grew from there, but finding her success in the field has not been without its challenges. “As a single parent, I could still develop my career. The journey hasn’t been easy, but it’s certainly been rewarding. The more roadblocks you overcome, the more your confidence builds to tackle the next hurdle."

The male presence was also obvious when she started her career. "Scottish manufacturing businesses were very old-school, with few women. I remember attending production meetings to see the male product managers battling, sometimes physically, for production line capacity. Shocking now, but the behavior was the norm then. I think that environment made me a little thick-skinned!"

Tracy encourages women coming into technology regardless of it being a male-dominated field. “Diversity is really important in business. We need more inclusion of women in information technology to provide differing approaches to problems, leading to more innovative solutions. If you only have one set of minds, then you know you’re only ever going to have one outlook. I would absolutely encourage any woman to come into information technology and break the mold. The tech industry offers great opportunities, fantastic variety of roles, and it's never boring.”

 

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In order to support Resideo’s efforts in attracting diverse STEM talent, Resideo is a member of the Society of Women in Engineering (SWE) and the National Black Society of Engineers (NSBE). Resideo is dedicated to building a competitive pipeline of diverse talent and transformative programs for scholar, emerging engineers, and information technology professionals.

See what jobs, including STEM jobs, we have available on our website here: 

https://www.resideo.com/us/en/corporate/about/careers/