The Problem With Women’s Pay

[Editorial]

I am not a woman, so I come to this topic very humbly. I am sorry if I come at this topic in a completely uninformed manner, without the right words or knowledge. I have learned a lot in the last couple of hours, and I write this out of my ignorance, not any authority on the topic.

Women’s Pay

For interesting fact Saturday I am reading some material on the pay gap between men and women.

Bright Spots

It’s not all bad news. Payscale reports that for men and women with the same qualifications the pay gap is only 2 cents. (Again I come to this humbly, feeling that this is an improvement, not the place where we can rest as ‘successful.’) The IIBA reported that for the first time in 2017 Business Analysts who are women made more than BA’s who are men. The report is good news for all of us because Business Analysts are often at the heart of how systems are designed, delivered, and used. If women are integral to every system that we make, the future starts to look much brighter.

Dark Spots

It’s also not all good news. The same payscale report tells us that overall women earn 21 cents less per dollar than men. That means if a man makes $100,000 a woman only makes $79,000 for the same job. (Again this is aggregate across all jobs.) Canadian women entrepreneurs make 58% less than men who are taking the same risks. That is a problem.

The Problem

The first thing that we need to do is understand that the discrepancy in what people get paid is a problem. I’m ok with the fact that people get paid different amounts, but it shouldn’t be because of who a person is. (Gender, race, or any other factor.) We should agree that people can be paid different amounts if they are giving a different value. (I pay less for my meal at McDonald’s than at Kelsey’s – there is a difference in value offered.) But when providing the same value, there shouldn’t be a discrepancy.

So ultimately it is a problem of value. We are not valuing the work that women are doing, and so we are willing to pay less.

The Solution

I don’t have a solution on how to fix the wage gap. I would love to know what more I can do.

Thinking about it is my first step. Leave a comment below and let me what we can do. Tell me one thing that you have done to reduce the gender wage gap, and one action that you suggest I take. Maybe we can fix this together.