Women are entering the technology sector in low and declining numbers. When they do, they often have difficulty navigating large technology companies. WBENC and Dell Technologies are on a mission to change this trend by dedicating resources to advancing women-owned businesses in technology.
In the fall of 2017, WBENC Board Member Piyush Bhargava, Vice President Procurement at Dell invited WBENC to join as their partner in developing a program to advance women-owned businesses in technology.
“We partnered with WBENC to deliver this signature program focused on women leaders because WBENC has consistently created an environment where women support and help each other develop and grow their businesses,” says Piyush.
After months of planning and collaboration, WBENC and Dell launched Women in Technology (WiT), a two-and-a-half-day program held in Austin, Texas (home to Dell Technologies) from September 17 – 20, 2018. Featuring an inaugural cohort of 34 Women’s Business Enterprises (WBEs) in the technology sector, the program was designed to help women business owners:
Understand the future of technology, how it will impact the business world, and how they can align their services in preparation for change.
Increase competence in day-to-day operations (sales, marketing, finance) and acquire high level strategic planning required to grow their business.
Gain business development and marketing knowledge to ensure growth/scale is managed properly.
Highlight the steps to form strategic alliances - and how they can get their foot in the door as suppliers to large tech companies, like Dell.
Moving forward, WiT will continue to help identify, promote and advance women-owned businesses in the underrepresented technology industry. “WiT allows us to contribute toward our goal of developing more diverse suppliers that can partner with technology companies like Dell to serve our customers,” says Piyush.
“Programs like these help move the needle,” says Pamela Prince Eason, WBENC President and CEO, who attended the program. “These programs connect women business owners with the resources and partnership opportunities they need to grow and be successful.”
Dell has a strong history and commitment to supporting women-owned businesses through programs like the Dell Women Entrepreneur Network (DWEN) and has been recognized as a WBENC Top Corporation for WBEs for the last decade. WBENC and Dell look forward to hosting another WiT program in 2019.
What WBEs are Saying
Check out some of the takeaways and learnings shared by the inaugural WiT cohort of WBEs:
“The WiT program provided me a rare opportunity to connect with my WBENC peers working in the technology field. This program allowed us to network and explore partnering and business connections, develop our strategic communication skills, examine business strategy for growth working on my business instead of just in my business.”
- Renee Coogan of Acquisition Logistics Engineering
“The Inaugural WiT Program was in a word, AMAZING! The content was rich, the speakers were informative and compelling, and the camaraderie amongst the WBEs was very strong.”
- Avis Rivers Yates of Technology Concepts Group International
“Three days, 22 subject matter experts, 34 women entrepreneurs and space to learn and create. Thank you to Dell and WBENC for making it happen!”
- Jennifer Naughton of Radiant Resources, Inc
Interested in participating in the WiT program in 2019? Stay tuned! More details to be shared in early 2019.