- In USA the average gender pay gap has shrunk from 24% to 21% in 2018
- More and more women are choosing to enter male-dominated fields and women’s participation in the labor force has grown, as well
- A business needs to ensure that their culture and policies are as attractive to both men and women and include work life balance plans
It might be some fifty years since the Unites States introduced laws mandating equal pay, but sadly there is still a gender pay gap that exists today.
Indeed, the latest study shows that even with growing public and shareholder pressure on companies to disclose and tackle gender pay gaps more progress is still needed.
However, things are improving as the data shows that in the USA the average gender pay gap has shrunk from 24% to 21% in 2018.
However, that means that women in the USA are still only paid 79 cents for every dollar that men earn, up from 76 cents in 2016 and at this current rate of progress, the wage gap will not be closed until 2106.
The results of the study are based on 426,512 salary reports that anonymous full-time workers shared over the past three years on the employer review site Glassdoor.
So, what might may be contributing to the narrowing pay gap?
The study indicates that difference in women’s education and experience shrank from 14% to 7.9% since Glassdoor’s 2016 study as women make up an increasing share of university students and workers gaining experience in the labor force.
More and more women are choosing to enter male-dominated fields and women’s participation in the labor force has grown faster than men’s in recent years which have both contributed to the narrowing of the gap.
Women are also asking for more money. Although a 2019 study by Hired, a global tech employment marketplace, showed that in 2019, women are asking for 4% less money than men, it is still a 2% improvement from 2018.
So, how can employers do more?
Although it is clear that progress has been made over recent years there still needs to be sustained action to close the pay gap even further, here are some ways employers can help close the pay gap:
A business has to have a clear policy that pays employees based only on the role and their experience and skills. Gender should never be a contributing factor.
Transparency is key and can be a powerful tool in attracting and retaining top talent. The more a business openly shares salary information and encourages an open conversation by revealing pay ranges and allowing employees to ask and discuss salaries, the more they will be seen as an employer of choice.
Businesses need to ensure they are targeting and attracting a diverse workforce so as not to perpetuate any biased culture they might currently have.
A business needs to ensure that their culture and policies are as attractive to both men and women and include work life balance plans.
Ultimately, a business has to take accountability for their actions and commit to reducing any barriers that might stand in their way to achieving pay equality.
Your business may not solve all the problems and barriers to gender equality immediately, after all it will always be an ongoing challenge, but even the smallest move forward will help not only the position of women in your company but will boost your reputation as an employer of choice and help you attract the best talent, male and female, and keep you one step ahead of the competition.