Gender pay gap in high-tech sector is 25%


There is a 25% gender pay gap in the UK’s high-tech sector, according to research by Mercer.

Its study, which is based on an analysis of 66,000 employees across 153 organisations using data from its Comptryx database, also found that small organisations within the high-tech sector have the largest gender pay gap, with a 30% difference in median pay between all male and female employees, and a 26% difference in mean base salaries.

When looking at specific job roles, the research found that those with professional experience encounter the highest pay gap, with female professionals earning 19% less than their male counterparts. There is a 32% gender pay gap across sales and marketing functions within the sector.

In terms of discretionary pay, such as bonuses, women are paid 20% less than men. This represents a typical payment of 3.7% of base pay for men and 3% for women.

Chris Charman (pictured), reward expert at Mercer, said: “The considerable gender pay gap in the tech sector comes as no surprise to most, though this relatively crude measure hides a bigger issue than just pay. A simple averaged figure across a whole organisation is easily skewed by disproportionate numbers of senior male high earners and men in specialist roles.

“In fact, a large gap is more likely to indicate a lack of women in professional and senior positions, rather than simply an uneven pay structure. To narrow the gap, it is not enough for [organisations] to be equal pay compliant, they also need to develop and support a healthy pipeline of women being promoted up through the organisation.

“With closer analysis, it’s clear that the gender pay gap is about more than just pay. Unfortunately, the proposed government regulations on gender pay gap reporting are too blunt a tool of measurement and will not solve the issue.

“To genuinely address the gender pay gap in a generation, the government must take more steps to promote shared parental leave, support organisations in creating balanced talent pipelines, and support educational initiatives that challenge gender stereotypes in work to enable young boys and girls to see a less gendered view of their roles in society in the future.”