Easyship Solutions & Updates

How Easyship is Keeping Female Empowerment at the Forefront of Logistics

Steve Longo

by Steve Longo

On 2019 M04 26

by Steve Longo

While it may be a tough pill to swallow, it’s no secret that the logistics industry has a history of excluding women. To date, the logistics industry has long been male-dominated, with women composing only about 23 percent of all workers. Fortunately, one of the pillars of success for our growing company is to blaze trails for female technologists in all departments; but to our admittance, we still have a long way to go.

Here’s What the Women of Easyship Have to Say

To better understand what Easyship is doing to empower women in logistics, we’ve interviewed some of our ‘she-roes’, as we call them, to get their thoughts on what it’s like to be a woman in logistics and tech.

Name: Shonel Symister

Role: Lead Crowdfunding Specialist - North America

Been at Easyship: Since July 28, 2017. Started as an intern, then Customer Success Manager

Role & Career Highlights

I’ve always been passionate about expressing myself through performance arts and creativity. This led me to pursue my BFA and then down the line to start my own online vintage boutique. This exposed me to the business side of the eCommerce world, which led me to pursue and obtain an MBA.

I have always enjoyed working with people and being able to provide them with a service that I can also relate to as an entrepreneur. From an intern to Customer Success Manager to now leading the crowdfunding efforts for North America, my role is consulting and providing guidance and resources for crowdfunding campaigns needing a logistics partner to fulfill their shipping needs.

Please tell us about a woman who has inspired you – professional or personal. And what is it about that person’s story that inspired or motivated you?  

I am inspired by many women who have crossed paths in my life and they have all shaped me in more ways than I can count, but the woman who has inspired me the most is my momma!  Her dedication to her passion in healthcare and her eagerness to continue learning about her passion is something that I have always admired and constantly try to mirror in my own life personally and professionally.

What’s one piece of advice you wish someone had told you about being a woman in tech?

It’s not a piece of advice I would say, but I do feel that if you are a woman just starting in the tech industry (a male-centric environment) or a male-focused industry, never feel like you cannot not speak up or provide your feedback. At Easyship, I have been able to be a voice in a room and that has accelerated so many improvements for our company's growth.

Name: April Tan

Role: U.S. Operations

Been at Easyship: November 2017

Role & Career Highlights

I first joined Easyship in its very early days as a summer intern and came back full time a couple years later to a company radically different than the one I had left. Starting off in operations, my role quickly expanded to meet the increasing demands of the business, working in finance, account management and just doing whatever needs to be done. For me, growing alongside Easyship has been one of the biggest highlights and it’s exciting to really see the impact of the work we all do each day.

What advice would you give to women looking to grow their careers in a startup company?

It’s a little early in my career for me to be giving words of wisdom, but one piece of advice I’ve received that has resonated with me is to be open to taking on new challenges, even if you’re not sure you can do it - it’s the only way you learn.

Name: Cristina Simoncini

Role: Junior Backend Developer

Been at Easyship: Since May 2017

Role & Career Highlights

After graduating in Management Engineering, driven by my interest in the logistics industry, I started my journey at Easyship as an Operations Intern and joined the team as an Operations Associate a few months later. In my previous role, I had the opportunity to work with different teams, from customer service to finance, but in particular with our tech team.

It’s thanks to all the teamwork with some of our developers that I discovered my passion for coding and eventually decided to switch paths and start a whole new journey as a backend developer. Today, in my tech role, I work on the API integrations of our shipping solutions, which allows me to do what I love (coding), while still getting insights on the major trends shaping the logistics industry.

What was one of the most pivotal moments in your career so far?

Surely leaving my previous role in operations to pursue a coding bootcamp and become a developer. It has been a big change and Easyship has played a big role in it.

I loved being part of the operations team and collaborating with so many different departments, but soon my interest in our technology became more than simple curiosity. I wanted to be able to contribute to it, and in general, I wanted to learn to code.

I therefore asked for advice to both our CTO and some of my colleague developers, who shared their own experiences and provided me with invaluable guidance. Last September, I finally decided to join a coding bootcamp. There I learned what I needed to start a new chapter of my career and eventually join our tech team as backend developer.

And how might other women in tech learn from that?

One take-away, as obvious as it sounds, is do what you love and do not be afraid to push your limits and challenge yourself. Also, when I was looking for advice, learning from Jane, one of my colleague developers, on how she learned to code and became a developer, had been inspiring and helped me to overcome that common perception of being unready that sometimes prevents us from taking bold decisions (I am so thankful to her!)

I therefore believe that it’s very important for us women in tech to share our experiences and create a sense of community, which would eventually encourage other women to pursue a career in tech and/or in other historically male-focused industries, like logistics.

What advice would you give to women looking to grow their careers in a startup company?

Take ownership of what you do. What I love about working in a startup company, and especially at Easyship, is indeed the sense of ownership. When people take ownership of what they do, they are constantly motivated to do their best and they thrive. As you grow, take some time to look back at what you have achieved and be proud of it. That will help you to gain confidence to set new and more challenging objectives for yourself.

How do you feel Easyship is fostering gender equality at the moment?

People are valued for their commitment and contribution to the team, regardless of their gender, background or where they come from. It’s a fast-paced and dynamic environment filled with new opportunities to learn and grow, and these opportunities are open to everyone. I think this plays a big role in fostering gender equality as it contributes to create an inclusive environment, gives women the chance to promote their ideas and ultimately empowers them.

Name: Jess Roma

Role: Senior Customer Success Manager

Been at Easyship: February 2019

Role & Career Highlights:

My role is to help brands open up their business worldwide and increase growth domestically and internationally with ease. Collaborating with creative and inspiring brands and experiencing their fast-paced growth alongside them is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.

How does Easyship go about fostering a strong sense of community?

Since the day I walked in for my interview, I’ve felt such a warm welcome. Everyone, no matter their role or how busy they are, has been so incredibly kind and always happy to help.

Being a global company, a lot of communication happens through email and instant message. Even with these virtual interactions, the experience has been incredibly positive for me. I believe Easyship sets very high standards on how to treat coworkers to ensure everyone on the team feels valued and supported. They really prioritize team bonding which I appreciate because at the end of the day, we’re all in this together. How I’ve been treated speaks volumes of the types of people I work with and an exciting, fun and positive culture that can be very hard to find.

Name: Jenny Kao

Role: Marketing Analyst

Been at Easyship: March 2018

Role & Career Highlights

I joined Easyship from a travel eCommerce company which had just outgrown the startup stage. At Easyship, I take care of most of the analytics work and answer people’s questions with data.

Please tell us about a woman who has inspired you – professional or personal. And what is it about that person’s story that inspired or motivated you?

I am grateful to have many wonderful women in my life that had influenced and changed me for the better in many ways. My sisters, the loving women who remind me who I want to be, have constantly inspired me to be selfless and kind. Contrasted with the more “capitalistic” path I took, one of my sisters started a social enterprise which makes reusable cups available for takeaway beverages at shops and cafes to cut down on the consumption of single-use paper cups. The other sister devoted herself to indigenous culture preservation instead of having a career in law, which she studied four years for.

What advice would you give to women looking to grow their careers in a startup company?

Do not be afraid of letting people know what you are capable of and the new ideas in your head! In the early stages of a company, people try to hack things together to make them work, so if you so happen to be experienced in a certain aspect, people will appreciate your suggestions or even participation in the projects.

Name: Jackie Ostrov

Role: Head of Growth

Been at Easyship: September 2018

Role & Career Highlights:

Prior to Easyship, I worked at various Fortune 500 and 100 companies. I think my highlights have always been in creating something new globally or doing something for the first time, even at such large organizations. Like launching an organization’s first 360 localized campaign or driving a new campaign initiative that in turn starts global conversations at scale.

Although I’m still a bit early in my tenure in Easyship, what I'm most excited for is doing the same and building communities and conversations of scale for our SMBs, who usually don’t have a platform to share all the cool things they do!

What’s one piece of advice you wish someone had told you about being a woman in tech?

I’ve always felt a bit of imposter syndrome in being categorized as a “woman in tech,” as I’ve felt that I’m usually around tech more than actually in it. Instead, I’d categorize myself as more of a “fringe techie” as a woman on the operational side of tech, like sales or marketing, where it’s easy to feel as though my softer skills are less essential.

So my feedback and advice would be that although coding is key to the fundamentals of every tech organization, non-technical skills are all essential to the ecosystem of any organization and with strong collaboration. That’s when the real magic happens!

Here at Easyship, we believe the future is female!

By empowering women in logistics, we’ve made it our mission to bring more voices into the fold, making our workplace more equal and giving everyone a fair shot, no matter who they are.

We’ve made it a priority to ensure that women are heard and valued equally. Though there is still admittedly work to be done, Easyship is proud to keep female empowerment at the forefront of the logistics industry and will continue to fight for progress in the years ahead!