Women in IT Conference

Monday 29 August 2016


The University of Auckland Women in IT group has been formed to support women in IT, through sharing of inspiring career stories, mentoring and encouragement. It provides a comfortable environment for women to discuss particular issues with other women in IT.

The 2016 conference, with the theme "Making a Difference" will bring together University IT professional staff with students, academics and alumni, to further build the community for women in IT. Unlock the possibilities of a career in IT across multiple disciplines. Inspirational speakers from the industry will talk about their careers and support for women in IT. Connect with other women working in IT to build a supportive community. Participate in workshops on leadership and learn how you too can connect, empower, and inspire.

Recruitment and retention of women in IT is particularly challenging. While there are generally more females than males graduating from universities, in the IT disciplines females only make up just over 30% of IT graduates. Maintaining women in the IT industry is also a problem with over 56% of women dropping out mid-career. Currently 24.5% of New Zealanders working in IT are women, and most of these roles are in non-technical areas.  These statistics are very similar to other developed countries which is a concern raised by the United Nations.

The NZ National Advisory Council for the Employment of Women states:

“It’s vital for New Zealand’s economic future that women participate fully in innovation.”

Research shows that diversity improves problem solving, productivity, innovation, and ultimately, the bottom line. According to a report by the National Centre for Women and Information Technology in the USA, gender-balanced companies perform better financially, demonstrate superior team dynamics and productivity, produce work teams that stay on schedule and under budget and demonstrate improved employee performance. 

With these thoughts in mind, this seminar is an opportunity to come together to support each other in a competitive industry and create a voice for women in IT within the university environment. 

The seminar is not just restricted to women. All are welcome who would like to understand the issues facing women in the industry and collaborate to support diversity.

I look forward to meeting you at the 2016 Women in IT conference in Auckland.

Liz Coulter

Director, ITS
The University of Auckland



Programme information

8.15 - 9.00am Registration opens


Opening Welcome and Housekeeping

Liz Coulter, Director ITS, University of Auckland


Lyndal Stewart, Business Mechanix


Catherine Fletcher, General Manager Operations, ASB
10.15am Morning tea


Helen Ward, Pricewaterhouse Coopers NZ

11.15am Elinor Swery, University of Auckland Alumni
11.45am Milena Velez, Blacksmith
12.15pm Lunch


Workshop 1A

'Career 101: Creating Your ‘Brand’ in the Marketplace'

Janet Tuck

View Janet's profile

The modern workplace is competitive and can be brutal for those who are not able to clearly articulate their value. The authentic story you create about yourself and the places you tell this story can define your career pathway. This workshop will help you understand the importance of personal career branding and networking, and give you some practical starting points for developing your own ‘Signature Brand’.

Workshop 1B

‘An introduction to MindMapping’

Lynda Clements
The University of Auckland

View Lynda's profile

Use the creative side of your brain!  Through the use of colours, images and words, mind mapping provides a visual and intuitive way to organise your thoughts, brainstorm, manage projects and much much more.

Also as part of this workshop I will introduce you to the benefits of juggling, and I’m not talking about multi-tasking!  Curious?  See you at the workshop.


Workshop 1C

‘What stops NZ women rising to the top’

Sarah Wilshaw-Sparkes

View Sarah’s profile

Sarah will talk about "What stops NZ women rising to the top". Professionelle surveyed their members and reviewed global research to identify the major barriers to women's career development.  In this talk, she explores the common themes between local and international insights and provides real-life examples based on the many interactions with career-oriented women she has had through Professionelle and her own consulting work. She’ll share positive, research-backed actions that women can take for themselves to overcome the barriers and build their careers.

Workshop 1D

'How to get the most out of mentoring  

Caroline Roughneen

View Caroline's profile

At any career stage, from student to leader, just about everyone needs a mentor. In this interactive workshop, learn about different approaches to mentoring and how you can get the most out of mentoring.   You will leave the workshop with a clear idea of how mentoring can help your personal and professional development and even have some actions to take away with you. .

2.45pm Afternoon tea


Workshop 2A

'Career 101: Creating Your ‘Brand’ in the Marketplace'

Workshop 2B

‘An introduction to MindMapping’

Workshop 2C

'What stops NZ women rising to the top’

Workshop 2D



Arnika Macphail, Cyclone  


Anna Christison, Microsoft
5.15pm - 6pm

Closing words by Liz Coulter.  Prizes.

Cocktail function with drinks and canapés.


The University of Auckland
Owen G Glen Building (OGGB)
12 Grafton Road



Registration open now


Registration fees for the Women in IT conference:

  Early Bird
to 22 August
(early bird registrations close at 3pm Monday)
 from 23 August
University of Auckland Student* $40 $50
University of Auckland Staff $75 $110
University of Auckland Alumni $100 $135
General registration
$140 $175

All fees are in New Zealand dollars and are inclusive of GST (Goods and Services Tax of 15%)

*Students must be currently enrolled in study at the University of Auckland and may be required to provide current student ID upon arrival at the seminar.


All registrations include access to all sessions within the conference, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea as well as attendance at the post-conference canapé function.


Credit or debit card payment will be required at the time of registration, unless you are University of Auckland staff and your department will be paying for your attendance. In this instance you will be able to complete your payment by internal journal.




Executive Partner
Cyclone logo
PWC Logo
Blacksmith Limited
OSS Group
ricoh logo
Keystone logo
Spark Digital
Dimension Data


For all enquiries please contact:

Tessa Lloyd-Hagemann
Event Services – The University of Auckland
Email: t.lloyd-hagemann@auckland.ac.nz