The 25by2025 initiative, launched by IATA, the international organization of the aviation industry, which aims to bring the representation of women in the industry to at least 25 percent by 2025, continues to grow. Hitit, Türkiye's international representative in airline and travel technologies, became one of the signatories of the initiative. Hitit was founded in 1994 by two female partners, Nur Gökman and Dilek Ovacak, and today, 50% of the board of directors, 65% of senior management, and 35% of the workforce are female. Given the male-dominated employment structure in both technology and aviation, Hitit, which delivers services at the intersection point of these two industries, stands out as one of the exceptional businesses that has been successful in improving the gender balance above the worldwide benchmarks.
Speaking at the signing ceremony held at the "Wings of Change Europe" event organized by IATA in Istanbul, Nevra Onursal Karaağaç, CMO at Hitit, said: "Today, only 5 out of 1,000 girls under the age of 15 aspire to work in IT sector. This rate is 15 percent for boys. While 88 percent of the employees working for machine learning are men, just 12 percent of them are women, and only 2 percent of information technology patents are held by women. Less than 6% of those who develop mobile apps and software are female. In large technological businesses and S&P 500 companies, women hold just 25% of the mid-level management roles."
Karaağaç noted that Hitit, which has focused on diversity and inclusion since its founding, is one of the few businesses that has been successful in reversing the trend against women in technology:
"Founded 28 years ago by two women who set out to create their own story in the field of airline and travel technologies, Hitit today provides software services for passenger services, operations, accounting and travel solutions to more than 60 airline companies on 6 continents. Hitit systems are used by 77 million travelers each year. Hitit, one of the world's leading companies in its field, has kept its female employee rate high for 28 years. We have the highest ratio of female managers among publicly traded companies in the software industry in Türkiye. With these rates, which are higher than the global norms, we are held up as an example not just in Türkiye but also throughout the world. Being a part of such a company makes me proud.”
Karaağaç stated that the company shapes its approach to social responsibility in accordance with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, emphasizing that the approach to diversity and inclusion is not limited to employment. "We aim to minimize the opportunity gap with the steps we take in the field of education. We take part in initiatives that support gender equality in education. We train women in STEM through the associations and platforms we are a member of. We prioritize young women in internships and recruitment and contribute to their development by providing mentorship and scholarship opportunities. We aim to achieve equitable participation in sports for boys and girls through our Rackets Up program."
25by2025 was launched by IATA to raise awareness of the need to improve female representation in the aviation industry. As voluntary initiative, 25by2025 signatories include THY and Pegasus Airlines from Türkiye. ASL Airlines Belgium, ASL Airlines France, ASL Airlines Ireland, FlySafair APG Network, Azerbaijan Airlines, Grupo SATA, Wingie Enuygun Group, FLYONE, La Compagnie, Northern Pacific, SunExpress, Travelport, World2Fly, Aviation Administration of Kazakhstan, Lithuanian Civil Aviation Authority, and Riga International Airport.