Media and Communications Manager
Thursday 8 March 2018 is International Women’s Day. This year’s theme, Press for Progress, is an opportunity to reflect on progress to date and priorities for the future. Here are some key facts about women and work in Australia.
The gender pay gap starts from graduation
- The national gender pay gap is 15.3%, with women earning on average, $253.70 a week less than men
- The total remuneration gender pay gap is 22.4%
- There is a gender pay gap favouring men in every industry and occupational level, regardless of whether they are male or female-dominated
- As soon as they graduate women earn less than men in 17 out of 19 fields of study and across nine out of 13 industries
- Technicians and trades positions have the highest gender pay gap at 26.7%, while clerical and administrative roles have the lowest at 8.4%
- There is a 24.9% pay gap between male and female key management personnel
Employers are continuing to act on pay equity, with 155 Australian business leaders publicly signing on to the WGEA Pay Equity Ambassador program, 38% of employers analysing their pay data and more than half of those taking action on the results.
The gender pay gap follows women into retirement
- Women retire, on average, with half the superannuation of men
- A higher incidence of part-time work, combined with the gender pay gap and extended periods out of the workforce leads to a 19% shortfall in superannuation contributions for women year-on-year
- Women are two and a half times more likely to retire in poverty than men
A number of Australian organisations have recognised this issue and are addressing it by offering employees on unpaid parental leave superannuation payments.
Women are missing from senior leadership and the board table
- 16.5% of CEOs or heads of business are women
- 29.7% of key management personnel positions are held by women
- 24.9% of board positions are held women
- 43.4% of manager appointments in 2016-17 went to women, with representation of women in management increasing across most industries
The Agency recently teamed up with the Business Council of Australia to develop a report Women in Leadership: Lessons from Australian companies leading the way to help organisations dismantle barriers to women’s participation at senior levels.
Australia’s workforce is highly segregated
- Women and men in Australia’s workforce are concentrated in different industries, with most industries being dominated by male employees.
- Only seven out of 19 industries have at least 40% women and men.
- Women are most concentrated in Health Care and Social Assistance (80.2% female) and Education and Training (63.4% female)
Many industries are developing policies and strategies to encourage women and men to enter non-traditional roles. The Agency developed a series called women’s work | men’s work, which focuses on a number of employees fighting stereotypes about the types of work women and men ‘should’ be doing.
Flexible working allows women and men to share the care
- 32.9% of women work part-time
- 10.7% of men work part-time
- Only 6.3% of all managers are employed part-time
- For every hour of unpaid domestic work a man does, a woman performs an hour and 46 minutes
- 74.3% of paid parental leave is utilised by women
- 45.9% of employers offer paid parental leave for primary carers and 39.3% offer paid leave for secondary carers
- 95.3% of primary carer’s leave is utilised by women and 94.8% of secondary carers in taken by men
Parental leave policies have also traditionally focused on the mothers, however Australian employers are slowly moving away from traditional maternity leave policies and instead focusing on gender neutral ‘parental leave’ for the primary carer.