Gender equality is not only a basic human right but a necessary foundation for a prosperous and sustainable world. With the ongoing problems of gender employment and pay gap, currently, men account for 3.3 percent of executives and 10.1 percent of senior managers compared to women who hold only 1.6 percent of executives and 6.2 percent of senior managers, questions came into our minds. What if the only factor to be judged upon job applications is skills? What if all genders, races, and nationalities are equal? We, ATLAS(T), wanted to be a part of creating a world where employment is judged based on the skill, and only the skill, of the employees. This inspired us to create ‘EMQUAL’ , an anonymous work recruitment website where employment will always be equal.

What it does

‘EMQUAL’ is an anonymous work recruitment website, where gender, race, nationality, personal information, and social status does not take advantage of one's skills and commitment. The website allows employees to anonymously apply for job positions. Users are presented with different positions in different companies they can apply for. They are able to see the job position with specific wages and requirements from each company and can apply via email. Companies will be sent an email and are able to view information of each applicant within the website. Their applications will be anonymous, only including their initials, email, years of experience in this field of work, and their resume. This allows hiring to be fair and equal as the applicants’ identity and personal information will not be a factor in the hiring process. This means that employment will solely be determined on the applicants’ pure skills and experience.

How we built it

Before starting to program, we brainstormed different ideas with each SDG goal given and settled on SDG5 with this idea. We started to build a simple simulation of the program in python. However, we weren’t able to develop this further into a working application. Therefore, we decided to change the program into a website. We coded this using HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript. After that, we exported the program into GitHub to be executable on any device.

Challenges we ran into & our hackathon experience

During the 3 days of working on the ‘EMQUAL’ website, we faced so many challenges. One of the most challenging parts for us was there were only 2 people in our team. Therefore, there is more work for each of us and time has to be managed well for our project to finish in time. The other biggest challenge for us was that both of us are not programmers or developers, we only have the basic programming skills and have faced lots of errors in our program along the way. In our opinion, we feel like we can remember each error message now. However, it was an incredible experience. There were times we wanted to throw laptops off the balcony, times when we wanted to dance around, and when the program finally worked, we literally nearly jumped into the pool. When the program you’ve spent hours working and researching on finally works, it feels amazing!

What we learned

From this Hackathon, we learned and developed so many skills. We get to know more about the language of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. The skills we have developed along the way are not only programming, but also time management, communication, teamwork, critical thinking, and problem solving. The other skill we found most important during this hackathon was resilience. This is because as we work, not everything will go as planned and there will be errors along the way. This hackathon raises our awareness that being resilient is important; no matter how many times we fail, we just have to bounce back and redo it again.

What's next for 'EMQUAL'?

We plan to follow our original intention of making a register/login system. This allows users to be traceable and also ensure safety within the 'EMQUAL' online community. There are so many functions that can be added and developed throughout the website. Confirmable identifications of degrees and resumes can become a requirement from employees to guarantee employers of the skills of their anonymous applicants. Contract from company can also be added to ensure that the employees receive the wage stated. Chat rooms and workspaces can also be added for people in the community to discuss different topics, ask for advice, learn new things, make friends, and get a broader perspective of the world. With the added functions and systems, ‘EMQUAL’ can become a credible, trustworthy, and safe community for everyone regardless of their gender.

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