Pictured at the Women ReBOOT Dublin Graduation event at Ibec HQ were Minister of State for Equality, Immigration and Integration, David Stanton TD, with Tracey Donnery, Executive Director, Skillet Ireland; Gary Lawson, Global Talent Acquisition Lead, Mastercard and Alison Tighe, Resource Specialist, Datalex. The Women ReBOOT programme from Technology Ireland Software Skillnet supports women with technology skills and experience return to work after a career break. (Photographer: Picture It Photography/Conor Healy)

The ICT sector will need over 70,000 new workers over the next five years with new graduates likely to make up about half of these numbers.

Developing new sources of talent will be critical to our tech sector and one solution could be to tap into an existing talent pool by supporting tech women to returning to work after a career break.

Only 17% of ICT professionals are female and a further attrition of around 40% in mid-career means that the sector is losing valuable female talent.

The Women ReBOOT programme is an innovative initiative from the Technology Ireland Software Skillnet. Funded by Skillnet Ireland, it supports women with technology sector skills and experience to return to work after a career break, by updating technology and professional skills, building confidence and facilitating paid work placements with leading technology firms.

There are plans to expand the ReBOOT programmes to support the progression of women already in the sector towards leadership roles, to conduct research on women in technology in Ireland, and to create a new Women Technology Leaders forum bringing together top tech employers in a new think-tank.

Funding from Skillnet Ireland will enable a further 100 female technology professionals to re-join the sector and take part in professional development within the sector this year.

To find out more about the Women ReBOOT programme, visit www.womenreboot.ie