Professionals Australia report confirms clear gender pay gap in Engineering
Professionals Australia recently launched its Women in Engineering report which found a clear gap between male and female engineers’ pay levels with female engineers earning 89 per cent of their male counterparts’ base salaries. The pay differential arose out of the concentration of women in less senior roles and greater numbers of males in senior management and executive positions.
The survey also found significant attrition from the female engineering workforce around age 30 with 13.1 per cent dropping out between the 20-29 and 30-39 age groups, compared with a drop of only 1.4 per cent for the male workforce at the same time. The survey also found that almost half (47%) of all women had experienced discrimination because of their gender,
Professionals Australia CEO Chris Walton said the gender pay gap and attrition of the female workforce beyond age 30 in engineering confirmed the need for engineering firms to be doing a lot more to attract and retain their engineering talent. “The attrition of so many women engineers from the workforce is a significant waste of expertise, talent and investment and we just can’t afford to lose them.
“While the current focus on encouraging greater numbers of women and girls to undertake STEM subjects at secondary school and engineering courses at university is vital to improving the participation of women in engineering, the problem is that this approach belies the complexity of the factors contributing to the underrepresentation of women in engineering and is at best only half the story.
“Addressing the attrition of women from the engineering workforce is the vital second half of the equation. Removing the obstacles, barriers and biases which operate as disincentives for women to remain in engineering is just as fundamental as increasing the participation of women and girls in engineering education. Only then will the pay gap and attrition issues be addressed, he said.
“That’s why we’ve launched a new publication alongside the Women in Engineering Report to help employers address some of the fundamental system issues that present obstacles to women’s advancement and in turn the gender pay gap. Stemming the Tide is about providing practical strategies to address the attrition of women from the STEM workforce.
“Addressing the progression, attrition and retention issues for women highlighted in this report should be a national priority. Ensuring a strong and sustainable workforce and fully realising our innovation and productivity potential will depend on it.”
And we also note the very important Marriage Equality Postal Ballot currently underway and encourage you to vote if you haven’t already. Results of the ballot will be announced on 15 November.
As always, we value your comments and feedback on all our activities so let us know what you think. If you’re experiencing problems with sexual harassment or discrimination or pregnancy discrimination you should contact our Workplace Advice and Support area on 1300 273 762 – they are there to help you work through the options for dealing with bias and discrimination in the workplace.
CEO, Professionals Australia
In this edition:
- Women in Engineering report finds clear gender pay gap
- Stemming the Tide – practical strategies for addressing the attrition of women from the STEM workforce
- Marriage equality ballot
- Unconscious Bias – what is it and how does it work to disadvantage women in the STEM workforce?
- Managing for diversity and flexibility
- Latest news/updates
- Professionals Australia’s Diversity and Inclusion Policy
- Comments and feedback
Women in Engineering report finds clear gender pay gap
Stemming the Tide
This Professionals Australia report details practical strategies for addressing the attrition of the professional women from the STEM workforce. Download the report here.
Marriage equality ballot
The National Board recently met and discussed the marriage equality postal ballot. The Board resolved to remind members of our strong commitment to diversity and inclusion encourage everyone to vote in the survey. Read the President’s statement and our diversity and inclusion policy here.
ICYMI – read through the titles in our Unconscious Bias series:
- Unconscious bias – what is it and why is it important in the STEM context? (Toner, M.)
- Unconscious gender bias in the STEM workforce (Professionals Australia)
- Unconscious and systemic bias in IT (Hochwald, M., Zarnegar, A., McCarthy, E. & Prince, S.)
- Pregnancy discrimination – a form of systemic bias (Kelly, J.)
Managing for diversity and flexibility
- Gender pay gap: Australian women could be paid less than men for another 50 years
- Underrepresentation of women in executive roles
- Fair Work Commission backs unpaid domestic violence leave
- Response to NHMRC Peer Review Consultation (October 2017) which talks about bias in the peer review process
Professionals Australia’s Diversity and Inclusion Policy
Click here to read the PA Diversity and Inclusion Policy which was endorsed by the National Board in January 2016.
Comments and feedback
Professionals Australia welcomes your feedback. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggestions and comments.
January 15, 2021
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November 12, 2020