Strategy & Operations » Leadership & Management » Female executives earn 9% less than men, report finds

FEMALE executives across Europe continue to be paid less than their male counterparts, according to a report by Mercer.

Out of the 269 companies and over 15,300 employees analysed in the UK the typical total cash salary – which comprises base salary and any additional cash awards such as base salary – for women was £93,434. This was around £10,000 less than their male counterparts, who earned an average of £103,230.

According to Mercer, which analysed the pay of 264,000 senior management and executives in 5,321 companies, across 41 European countries, the greatest pay-disparity occurred in Germany where women executives were paid 22% less than the total compensation of their male counterparts.

“Simple discrimination on pay is often the reason behind salary differences, but there are other factors at play here. Women, more than men, tend to move in and out of the workforce often due to childcare responsibilities,” said Sophie Black, principal in Mercer’s executive remuneration team.

Another cause of the gender pay gap is ‘occupational segregation’, a term used to describe how support, or ‘function’ roles, like HR and Marketing, tend to be dominated by women.

“Education also plays a part in perpetuating the situation,” continued Ms Black. “If men and women are encouraged to think that everything is within reach, then occupational segregation will be undermined and companies will see a much more diverse workforce.

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