Friday, December 8, 2023

Working Women – 5 Facts That May Surprise You About Women in the Workforce.

September 21, 2021 by  
Filed under Business, News, Opinion, Tech/Internet, Weekly Columns

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( The importance of diversity in the workplace cannot be understated. While your grandmother, mother, or even a single episode of Mad Men will tell you that things have improved greatly over the last few decades, the push for equality is far from over. In honor of all the women who’ve gotten us this far and all those who are furthering the push for change, here are five facts everyone should know about women in the workplace:

1. Things are looking up in STEM

Women are majorly underrepresented in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). However, with concerted effort, things are looking up. Governments around the world are introducing schemes and grants to encourage women into these growing fields. Though we still have a long way to go, the stats are promising. In 1970, women only accounted for around 8% of STEM workers. In 2019, that figure had grown to 27%, and it’s only onwards and upwards from there. 


2. Women ask for what they’re worth

Recent research has dispelled the myth that the wage gap persists because women don’t ask for pay rises as much as men and don’t negotiate as effectively. More than one study has refuted this belief, including McKinsey & Company’s 2018 Women in The Workplace Report. 

Not only do women ask for promotions and negotiate for raises, but they actually do this more than men. While McKinsey & Company found that around 29% of men had negotiated for a pay raise, 31 percent of women had done so during the study period.

3. The wage gap is still a thing

According to Pew Research, women earned on average 84% of what men did in equivalent roles. Over the years, this disparity adds up, resulting in all sorts of flow-on effects that few people think to connect to gender wage disparity. 

Home ownership among females is lower than among males, and considering the fact that by the time she reaches 65 years of age, the average woman could buy one or two houses with the money lost to the wage gap, this is hardly surprising.  

4. The pandemic hit women harder than men

This was true on a global scale. The IZA Institute of Labor Economics conducted research in six countries, and across the board, women were found to be 24% more likely to lose their jobs than their male colleagues. 

Even those women who held onto their jobs faced an exacerbation of the gender pay gap brought about by the pandemic. Studies are revealing that pandemic-related wage losses are affecting women more heavily than men. For example, a study conducted by the International Labour Organization (ILO) found that women’s wage losses were at around 8.1% compared to around 5.4% among men.

5. Women dominating in many areas

Though the stats on women in the workforce can get depressing, there are plenty of positive signs. Women are now earning more bachelor’s degrees than men, and in general, are earning more degrees than ever before. 

Female business ownership is on the rise, and women are also more likely to report feeling job satisfaction than men. If they’re not entirely satisfied at work, women are also more likely to either actively or passively search for more fulfilling opportunities.  

Humanity still has a lot of work to do before we can say that we’ve truly embraced diversity in the workplace. Gender discrimation is just one of many problems that needs to be tackled. However, the progress made on this front gives us hope that we will one day be able to look back on all forms of discrimination as ugly relics of the past. 

Staff Writer; Susan Barker

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