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IT women still not paid as much as men—but the gap is shrinking

September 05, 2013

Pay disparity remains an ongoing problem for women in the workforce, with most female workers making $0.77 for every dollar a man earns. However, in the tech sector, the difference between the genders may be a bit less, as companies strive to compensate both male and female IT support personnel equitably.

In fact, PayScale's recent report "Women at Work: PayScale Redefines the Gender Wage Gap" found that in the technology field the gender wage gap shrinks significantly.

Women almost make as much as men                
PayScale's study looked at 150 tech-specific jobs, and when controlling for education, experience and job responsibilities, the differences were small if even present.

However, a recent salary study from may illuminate why the gender wage gap is shrinking in this sector, and how the data may be misinterpreted. The survey, as cited by CIO magazine, found that men and women in the same position with the same experience and the same education are paid equally. The gap begins to arise across jobs and sectors, as the two genders tend to hold different positions.

The top five tech positions for women include project manager, business analyst, other IT, QA tester and technical recruiter, whereas men were more likely to be found as a software engineer, systems administrator, project manager, IT management or applications developer, the news source revealed.

"Our survey shows that more men are gravitating to software engineering, programming, architecture and more 'technical' positions, while more women are in project management, administration and the 'softer' technology roles," said CEO Scot Melland, according to CIO.

But Melland did not ignore that underlying factors could be contributing to how men and women end up in these jobs, CIO reported. While many may choose these positions, there may be underlying issues affecting the results such as a "systemic, institutional bias" that not only prevents women from getting these jobs, but also from applying for these positions in the first place.

As the demand for IT staffing continues to rise, this may open up more opportunities for women to win top positions. However, some individuals are approaching the problem head on. New York City Mayoral candidate Christine Quinn recently proposed the creation of five new science schools exclusively for girls that would boost female participation in STEM—science, technology, engineering and math—across the city, according to The New York Daily News.

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