Parity announced today that Skillz, a leader in mobile eSports, has become the first gaming company and the first eSports company to take the ParityPledgeTM. With this undertaking, Skillz joins a growing number of tech companies to publicly announce that they will interview at least one qualified woman for every open executive role. This is an important step forward for the gaming industry, particularly with frequent headlines regarding gender inequality in both the technology and media industries.
“Parity.org was founded to correct the stark reality of gender imbalance at the very top of companies today,” said Cathrin Stickney, Parity.org founder and CEO. “As the fastest-growing private company in America, Skillz is setting an important example for others by making this public commitment. We are thankful for their support and hope this will help open doors to leadership for more women in the gaming industry.”
Beginning with the tagline, eSports for Everyone, Skillz has held diversity and inclusion at the core of its mission since the company’s founding in 2012. According to a recent International Game Developers Association industry study, the Skillz workforce is more than 50% higher than the gaming industry average of 23%. Not to mention that Skillz technical team has nearly twice the ratio of female to male employees as well known tech companies such as Twitter, Uber, Microsoft and Google.
“The technology and gaming industries under represent women in the workforce and we are an agent of change in an industry that is long overdue,” said Miriam Aguirre, Vice President of Engineering at Skillz. “Creating an equitable workplace isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s vital to building a thriving business for tomorrow’s workers.”
The company’s commitment to equality in the workforce has resulted in the most inclusive eSports system in the world, with women accounting for more than half of all Skillz players (53 percent) in the past year. Moreover, Skillz recently announced that women dominated the company’s top player rankings for 2017 with seven of the top ten spots. In fact, the top female athlete on the platform ranked first overall, claiming tournament prizes that totaled over $420,000 in 2017.
“We’re thrilled to join the Parity Pledge to further our commitment to creating an inclusive environment for our co-workers, our players and our developers,” said Andrew Paradise, CEO and founder of Skillz.
The ParityPledge started in 2017 to bring gender equality to the highest levels of business and was inspired the NFL Rooney Rule, a National Football League policy that requires league teams to interview qualified minority candidates for head coaching and senior football management roles.