Gemma Lloyd co-founded gender equality jobs site Work180 after being dismissed as a ‘pretty young blonde’ by a potential employer, despite having 10 years’ experience working in the tech industry.

“During the 10 years I spent in the tech industry I found there to be two very different workplace structures,” explains Gemma. “One was the archaic boys club, where being female meant less money and fewer opportunities. The other valued all employees, regardless of their gender or background. The problem was that there was no way of knowing which one I was talking to when applying for a new job. That’s when the idea for a jobs site was born.”

Work180 only lists jobs from businesses that are pre-screened against a set of 35 criteria, including pay equity, flexible working, paid parental leave and equal opportunities. The information that Gemma and her team uncover is made public on the website so prospective employees know what to expect from each employer before applying for a job. Work180 is now one of Australia’s leading authorities and ambassadors of gender diversity. It launched in the UK in March and has since raised $1 million in investments to expand to the United States by November. “It became apparent how needed the WORK180 solution is for the US,” says Gemma. “They are definitely behind on parental leave so the impact in the US is much greater than what we can do in Australia. I think it is going to have a much greater effect and drive much bigger change.”

Entrepreneur Gemma was a Telstra Business Women’s Awards finalist in 2017 across two categories (For Purpose and Young Business Woman) and won the WIT Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2016. She will be relocating to New York in order to work across time zones in the US and UK, while co-founder Valeria Ignatieva focuses on the Australian business.

Banner Image: Gemma Lloyd and Valeria Ignatieva

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