Girlgaze wants to pave the way for companies to hire female-identifying and nonbinary creative talent from all corners of the globe, launching a digital jobs platform with 200,000 potential employees in 62 countries.
At the very least, brands, agencies and other employers won’t be able to fall back on the old excuse that they don’t know where to look for diverse photographers and artists, according to Girlgaze founder and CEO Amanda de Cadenet, who announced The Girlgaze Network at Cannes on Thursday during a panel called “Smashing Beauty Stereotypes” with Unilever’s Sophie Galvani, TV megaproducer Shonda Rhimes and Getty Images exec Rebecca Swift.
Calling it “a platform aimed at closing the gender gap one job at a time,” de Cadenet said the network can solve “the pipeline challenge that many companies are faced with.”
During a beta test this spring, the network was the conduit for 550 paid jobs, generating more than $1 million for its participants—much of it from a single employer, Unilever’s Dove.
The Girlgaze Network wants to further scale its service via tech that can pair creatives and employers through “non-biased browsing,” de Cadenet said. That feature, intended to reduce conscious and unconscious biases, shows a candidate’s work, skills, interests and qualifications first, without details that identify the talent personally. Companies can also search by location, availability and other criteria.
There’s a subscription fee, monthly or yearly, for employers, who can also post their jobs on the site.
Creatives maintain their profiles, curated portfolios and other info and may opt in for mentorship and career counseling from Girlgaze board members and its broader community.
The Girlgaze Network is a follow-up of sorts to the female-led agency’s partnership this spring with Dove and Getty Images for a project called #ShowUs, which rolled out a collection of 5,000 culturally relevant, trope-busting images of diverse women in stock photography.
That program offered “no digital distortion, just an unapologetically inclusive vision of beauty,” its partners said in March. The subjects in the images are diverse in age, ethnicity and body type, with Swift predicting at the time that the collection would “break visual cliches on an unprecedented scale.”
There’s wide representation, also, among the creators of the work: 116 female-identifying photographers from 39 countries.
So far, more than 900 companies across a wide range of industries have downloaded 7,000 of these images. #ShowUs photos have been licensed in 40 countries, including the U.S., Japan, India, Kenya, Mexico and Russia.