All about the gender pay gap

  

business gender pay

Women workers have long been affected by the the gender pay gap, which is the average difference between the remuneration for men and women in the work field. This phenomenon occurs all over the world and across every industry, although it is more pronounced in certain countries and work fields.

Certain factors like maternity leave that make women take time off work contribute to lower yearly earnings for women. Although the pay gap has decreased over the past few years, it still exists, despite efforts by individuals, governments and organisations to narrow it.
There are two different types of pay gaps - unadjusted and adjusted. The adjusted pay gap takes into account the hours worked, occupations chosen, education and job experience. Unadjusted pay gaps are much higher. For instance, in the United States, unadjusted average female's annual salary has been cited as being 78% of the average male salary, in contrast with 88-93% for the adjusted average salary for college graduates.
Factors that contribute to lower pay can be due to both voluntary and involuntary choices. When someone chooses to work part-time when a full-time position is available is called a voluntary choice. Meanwhile, when someone has a low-skill job because they have no access to higher education, this classifies as an involuntary choice.
Even when the reason for the gap is voluntary, the gender pay gap presents a potential problem from a public policy perspective because it means that women are more likely to be dependent upon welfare payments, particularly in old age.
Evolution of pay gap
According to a meta-analysis by Doris Weichselbaumer and Rudolf Winter-Ebmer of more than 260 pay gap studies for more than 60 countries, from the 1960s to the 1990s, raw wage inequality on a global scale has fallen substantially from around 60% to 30%. The reason behind this decline was an improvement of conditions for female workers.
Economist Alan Manning of the London School of Economics, however, cautioned that the process of narrowing the gender gap has slowed significantly. Accordingly, women could earn less than men for the next 150 years due to discrimination and ineffective government policies.
Some of the factors that influence gender pay gap include gender-specific factors - gender differences in qualification and discrimination - and overall wage structure, the rewards for skills and employment in particular sectors, importantly influence the gender pay gap. Other factors that explain the pay gap is that men usually choose high-paying, dangerous industries such as mining, construction or manufacturing, which women prefer clerical jobs or to work in the service industry. The growing importance of the services sector has played an important role in narrowing the pay gap over the past years.
Almost all OECD have established anti-discrimination laws on grounds of gender. The OECD points out that: "herein lies a major problem: in all OECD countries, enforcement essentially relies on the victims' willingness to assert their claims. But many people are not even aware of their legal rights regarding discrimination in the workplace. And even if they are, proving a discrimination claim is intrinsically difficult for the claimant and legal action in courts is a costly process, whose benefits down the road are often small and uncertain. All this discourages victims from lodging complaints."
Nearly eight years after the Equality Act, the UK has data - the first of its kind in the world - that uncovers the gender pay gap in private businesses and the public sector. According to the report, men are paid more than women in 7,795 out of 10,016 companies and public bodies in the country. Meanwhile, eight out of 10 companies and organisations filed had a pay gap. These figures ring the alarm in terms of structural inequalities in the workforce and may be key to narrowing the gap.
Professor of the Wo+Men's Leadership Centre at Cambridge Judge business school, Sucheta Nadkarni, said that the error margin and other factors at work, the figures do show men are paid more than women on average.
She stated,” Whether it is because women are getting paid less for the work that they are doing or because women are not getting equal opportunities to get into positions where the pay level is high - it doesn't matter what the reason is, but there is a gender pay gap and in most cases it's an issue of equality and justice. In both cases it's an issue of an imbalance of some sort.”

 

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