- The gender pay gap can be described as the difference in earnings between women and men, which is due to societal issues and discriminatory practices.
- In a Q&A with HireVue Interim CMO Amanda Hahn, she explained how companies and recruiters can do their part in closing the gender pay gap.
- For any business leader to truly have an impact on the issue of the gender pay gap, they first need to acknowledge it remains a pervasive problem.
In many aspects of life, such as employment, women and men haven’t always been treated equally, and this issue persists.
The gender pay gap can be described as the difference in earnings between women and men, which is due to societal issues and discriminatory practices.
Women make about 82 cents for every dollar made by their male counterparts, and this amount decreases even further for women of color.
A recent study by Glassdoor found that the gender pay gap remains a problem for 41% of employed women.
Nearly 2 in 5 employed women are job-hunting, with higher pay as the goal, according to a survey from ResumeBuilder.
Here are some more key highlights from the survey:
- 37% of women who are currently employed are looking for a new job
- 63% of those looking for new employment are doing so to find better paying positions
- 75% of women consider a company’s maternity and family leave policies when applying for jobs
- 89% of women say it’s important to them that their employers have women in leadership roles
Unfortunately, nearly 3 in 10 Americans (28%) think that the pay gap is a myth.
“This shows how much confusion and controversy still surround the pay gap,” says Matt Gotchy, Trusaic’s EVP of Marketing.
There are also large race/ethnicity pay gaps – plus pay gaps faced by those at the “intersections” between genders and race/ethnicities, between, say, a White man and a Black woman.
The best-known pay gap is the gender pay gap between men and women: U.S. women still, on average, earn 18% less than men.
Business leaders must acknowledge the problem
Stephanie Lovell, Head of Marketing at Hirect, explained that for any business leader to truly have an impact on the issue of the gender pay gap, they first need to acknowledge it remains a pervasive problem.
“Studies have found as recently as 2020, women still made only 84% of what men earned. To fully understand if and how this pay gap may be affecting their organization, leaders should start with a comprehensive audit to examine their salary structure, paying particular attention to any wage discrepancy of female employees or workers who represent other minority demographics,” Lovell told Allwork.Space.
We asked Lovell how company leaders can ensure they’re doing their part in closing the gender pay gap, and she said that most importantly, leaders should commit to a culture of salary transparency.
“This starts as early as the hiring process by disclosing pay bands with all job listings. It can also mean disclosing all organizational salaries – from C-suite to junior staffers – either internally or to the greater public. These steps, along with regular salary reviews, can provide current and prospective employees an unobscured view into a company’s wage structure and practices, giving them greater confidence they’re being compensated equally and fairly when compared to their colleagues and industry standards,” Lovell told Allwork.Space.
In a Q&A with HireVue Interim CMO Amanda Hahn, she explained how companies and recruiters can do their part in closing the gender pay gap.
Allwork.Space: What are some ways that companies have been creative about recruiting more women?
Amanda Hahn: The pandemic had an immediate and disproportionate impact on women in the workforce with layoffs, and even as the economy has continued to heal, women still haven’t recovered jobs at the pace of men. Fortunately, we’re seeing large-scale adoption of recruiting practices that prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion, and women will undoubtedly benefit as these become the norm.
Most investments in the past have been made on sourcing changes to find female candidates, and although that’s a critical piece of the solution, without ensuring you have a fair and equitable process from start to finish means you could be compromising a substantial investment.
One of the best ways to infuse equity into your hiring process is to implement structured interviews where every candidate is asked the same questions that focus on the job-relevant skills as the selection criteria.
When done asynchronously via video, we see that diversity increases because unconscious and conscious biases aren’t gatekeeping otherwise qualified candidates from making it further into the interview process.
HR leaders know all too well that getting diverse team members in the door is just one piece of the puzzle; without a culture of belonging, there’s a never-ending cycle of attrition with the very people you worked so hard to source and hire.
The good news is that more companies are taking a more holistic approach — from implementing fairer hiring to more transparent pay scales — because end-to-end shifts are what’s going to drive lasting change.
Allwork.Space: Are more companies interested in closing the pay gap than ever before?
Anecdotally speaking, leaders know more now than ever about discrimination and how bias can creep into systems. Armed with this knowledge, employers are making significant investments to prevent and undo damage like unequal pay. In addition to what’s a clear moral imperative, there’s a pressing need for businesses to focus on pay equity: staffing shortages and mass resignations.
It has always been less expensive to retain a good employee than it is to find a new one, and initiatives to attract and retain diverse talent are gaining organization-wide buy-in because keeping top employees has a significant effect on a business’ bottom line.
Allwork.Space: When looking for a new job, how important is a company’s dedication to closing the pay gap to most female candidates?
You can’t fix what you don’t focus on, so it’s best to pay close attention to the language a company uses on their website and job postings. A job posting can give an illuminating first impression of a company’s culture and values. The words that are used—or not used—are a clear indication of a company’s stance on inclusion.
Keep an eye out for gender-coded words that may be difficult to relate to. Words that show a gender stereotype such as “dominate” or “guru” may show that the employer is not fully committed to leveling the playing field.
Lastly, the debate amongst recruiters about including compensation in job descriptions is a vigorous one, and many states are taking the debate out through mandates, but the presence of a salary in a job posting is another great signal that a company takes pay transparency and equity seriously.
Allwork.Space: How can recruiters help with closing the gender pay gap?
Candidates are more than just the sum of the bullet points on their resumes. Now more than ever, it is critical to evaluate people based on their skills and capabilities, rather than arbitrary indicators like previous employer, previous job title or school, data points we know are often susceptible to unintentional bias.
Recruiters should also be mindful to not penalize candidates for resume gaps, which are more likely to occur for women who often act as primary caregivers for children and parents. Hiring tools such as mobile-friendly, validated pre-hire assessments and structured virtual interviews offer candidates a better experience while focusing on and accurately measuring job-related competencies.
This focus on skills, not resumes, will help women get the jobs they apply for and have always deserved.