The UK’s largest tech companies have more than 2.5 times the number of women in leadership roles than firms listed on the FTSE 350, according to a new study.

Ahead of International Women’s Day (8 March), data analytics and businesses intelligence developer Panintelligence found that 9% of large tech companies in the UK are currently led by a female CEO, compared with just 4% of FTSE 350 firms.

It comes a week after figures showed that the number of women on the boards of FTSE 350 companies has jumped by 50% since 2015.

Despite the UK tech sector leading the way in female leadership Zandra Moore, CEO of Panintelligence, says more work must be done to further address this gender imbalance.

“While it’s important to recognise that these figures show the technology sector is leading the way in female leadership, it’s clear that more must be done to both increase the percentage in our own industry and within the wider business community as well. Events such as International Women’s Day continue to shine a light on the capabilities of women, everywhere, and must continue to do so.

“When trying to climb the corporate ladder women often still face a number of challenges; such as gender bias, inequality, a lack of support from their male counterparts, outdated workplace cultures and even negative mindsets and thoughts. Even family choices, such as wanting to start a family, can hinder womens’ progress in reaching top leadership positions.

“If men and women don’t work together more effectively to raise awareness and tackle these issues, then the gender pay gap may exist for some time to come – yet studies have shown that companies with gender diversity outperform their less diverse peers. Committing to diversity targets, creating female talent networks, implementing flexible working models or restricting recruitment processes are all way in which businesses can encourage gender diversity in boardrooms.”