Gender Equality In the Workplace

Gender Equality In the Workplace

Nevertheless, even after many generations, women are still disadvantaged compared to men in labor markets. The continuous of the differences in the employment rates, part-time work participation, compensation, and job quality results in the big gender gaps in earnings and career advancement. Thus, the women usually get lesser lifetime earnings and a higher possibility of poverty in the old age.

The Gender Wage Gap

The 2021 OECD data confirms that the gender pay gap has been slightly reduced from 14% in 2010 to 11%. 9%, the recent studies bring the issue back to the concern of the public. As per the United States Census Bureau (March 2023), the US gender pay gap has remained unchanged over the last 20 years, with women in 2022 earning only 82% of what men earn. In the same way, Forbes (2024) states that the gender pay gap in the US could be as wide as 16%, with women earning 84 cents to the dollar in comparison to men. These results show that the pay gap between men and women is still there and we should keep working on it to get it equal.

The OECD’s latest research based on subsets of countries estimates that three-quarters of the gender wage gap between men and equally skilled women shows compensation differences within firms, particularly due to differences in tasks, responsibilities, and, to a minor extent, differences arising when evaluating work of equal value. A quarter of the gap can be explained by the fact that women are primarily concentrated in low-paid jobs. 

A wide range of factors could explain why the pay gaps between men and women keep increasing. Women are also more inclined to be part-time workers and in their contribution to annual earnings the part-time earnings are low and unlikely to be promoted. Women have also less chance for job changing and, consequently, lesser lifetime earnings because job swapping is usually associated with pay increases. 

Policies on the gender wage gap should be designed holistically to attract girls and young women to study in diversified areas. The provision of paid leave for women and the implementation of salary equity and transparency requirements must all be considered as part of this policy measure.

Parental Leave And Childcare

However, many nations have already started to work on the issue of family support in the last few years. Nevertheless, the chances of gender-related patterns in parental leave and childcare are still there. Following the birth of their first child, women usually take longer breaks than men and are the ones who are more likely to work part-time. These adjustments probably will be the reason for the earnings gap between women and men, which is called the “motherhood penalty.

One approach to closing this gap is to focus on men: if fathers are given the right to non-transferable parental leave, their uptake will surely be high. For example, in Iceland, fathers’ parental leave was 3% of the total when mother and father quotas were introduced in the early 2000s. The last time, men’s share of leave was one-third of the total days taken and was about 45%.

Numerous OECD nations are pioneers in creating systems to guarantee equal parental leave. The Western European countries provide paid paternity leave, some extend the paternity leave entitlements or provide fathers with non-transferable leave rights. Besides, other countries outside the EU have also introduced policies that are aimed at strengthening the incentives for paternity leave.

Apart from the maternity leave around childbirth, the high cost of center-based childcare in most OECD countries is the main reason for the difficulties of mothers to return to full-time employment. The development of gender equality in unpaid and flexible work, the encouragement of shared parental leave, and the maintenance of affordable center-based care are the most important measures to keep mothers in the labor force.

Measuring Gender Equality At Work: Pay Transparency

The steps to increase pay transparency are getting more and more popular, since over 50 percent of OECD countries require the private sector firms to report the gender wage gap regularly.

Among the OECD countries, nine of them have introduced the equal pay auditing processes which are comprehensive. These audits are the ones that need more gender data analysis and usually suggest the follow-up strategies.

New Frontiers In Policy Making

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, remote working while being connected virtually to the office has become the norm for many. This drastic change comes with a gender element with early data showing vast differences in the extent of the effect remote working has on revenues between men and women.

However, the impacts of remote working on gender differences in the labor market are in progress. Policymakers need data to make accurate descriptions of these effects and provide necessary interventions to make sure that remote working helps to wipe out the gender gap issue.

Policymakers should focus on the gendered  effects of remote work in these areas: 

  • Help managers dismantle gender bias related to telework;
  • empower women in decision-making; and
  • integrating remote work with childcare, eldercare, and flexible hours.

How FastLane Group Can Help?

Join FastLane Group in advocating for gender equality in the workplace! Together, let’s push for actions that promote pay transparency, parental leave equality, and flexible work arrangements between men and women. By taking action, we can create a more inclusive and fair work environment for all. Join us in making a difference today!

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