How to keep Bias out of Payments – Fireside Chat with Jane Butler

17 December 2020
EWPN Keep bias out of payments

Earlier in November, the European Women Payments Network (EWPN) held a fireside chat with our chairperson, Jane Butler. The webinar highlighted how crucial diversity of thought is when making important decisions about technical solutions. And, we discussed how Cybertonica has broken the mould in terms of culture, diversity and bias within tech teams, and how this has better enabled the business to fight fraud. 

Jane Butler, Vice Dean of The Faculty of Engineering at University College London, Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and Chairperson of Cybertonica.

The fireside chat explored the impact of human bias on the #payments industry. Jane shared her personal experiences and learnings of over 40 years in the tech industry. And, we have summarised the discussion’s highlights and listed our key inspiring takeaways!

Lack of Diversity 

Firstly, we dived into discussing the lack of diversity in #tech leadership positions. Did you know that only 5% of women are represented in these positions? This poses the following question. How can companies create impactful solutions, if their leadership teams are not fully representative of the world around us? 

Unravelling and reducing #bias in payments and technology, starts from educating students at a young age. For example, it is important to break down career misconceptions and gender #stereotypes. Hence, students can be better informed on what a career path in STEM entails. Jane highlights the importance of schemes that empower students to have equal access to opportunities at whatever point they are at in their education or life in the workplace. 

The Progress

“If you see tremendous inequality in the workplace then you have to address it” Jane claims. 

However, we agree that in recent years progress has been made with promoting equality in the workplace and encouraging equal opportunities. But there’s still a lot left to do to move the needle to the point where gender does not even need to be discussed any more. 

Refuse things that are wrong 

As Jane developed in her career, she grew in confidence which helped her break the glass ceiling. She shared that learning to refuse things that are wrong is vital in life. She adds:

”Refuse to accept lower pay and worse conditions”. 

“Only by vocalising and being transparent with pay and conditions, we can reshape the path for our future leaders and remove workplace bias.”

Inspiring Takeaways:

  1. Working out who your supporters are in the workplace is vital. And indeed, a key contributor to Jane’s perseverance was her network and the community she chose to surround herself with at all stages in her career. Along with that she credits her father, who was her early inspiration. And nowadays, she puts a lot of store by her trusted ally at home, her very supportive husband.
  2. Balance confidence with humility. So, be optimistic and have a can-do attitude, alongside listening and responding effectively to others.
  3. Keep building your skills. Keeping yourself relevant technically is very important as well as keeping a solid perspective on the industry you are in. These attributes mean colleagues value you at all levels of an organisation. 

If you haven’t already, tune in to the fireside chat below. 

About Cybertonica

At Cybertonica, we are proud of fostering diverse teams, especially in our London office. We speak over 10 languages and are 46 per cent female. 

Cybertonica believes that working with diverse teams and creating strong support networks is key to building successful solutions free from bias. Therefore, by honing in on different skillsets and people’s experiences, we can continue to work to reduce fraud and manage risk using AI and Machine Learning.

Cybertonica is an award-winning platform for the management of risk, AML, compliance and fraud detection. Through continuous authentication, friction is eliminated for legitimate users and payment agents while automation delivers huge efficiencies in managing fraud prevention. Cybertonica means no compromises on inclusion, risk, privacy or security.

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