Women across the United States who work in tech are generally paid less than their male counterparts, even when education, years of experience, and specific occupations match.
That’s not exactly news; study after study has confirmed the differential. The latest analysis, a review of three years’ worth of salary survey data collected by job search site provider Dice, once again found that the overall gap persists.
The Dice analysis did find some interesting differences in regions and engineering disciplines. For instance, women in cloud engineering, systems architecture, and network engineering might be doing better than their male counterparts, though the sample sizes for cloud engineering and systems architecture were too small to be conclusive, and the differences were not statistically significant.
Regionally, women in tech in Minnesota might be making more than their male counterparts, though again, the difference of $3929 didn’t meet the $5000 threshold for statistical significance. Meanwhile, those in Utah and Alabama are facing the biggest gap; California’s tech women fit somewhere in the middle.
Of course, being happy at work isn’t just about salary, although it is the number one factor, according to Dice’s research. Dice looked at other motivators, and found that remote work options are the second most significant factor for women, third for men. Those options are rapidly spreading through the tech industry this month, in response to the new coronavirus.
The pay gap is so normal that women have come to expect to be paid less, the Dice survey suggested. According to survey, the average salary for a woman who reports being satisfied with her compensation is $93,591, while the average salary for men who report being satisfied is $108,711. Despite lower expectations, more women (38 percent) than men (33 percent) told Dice that they aren’t satisfied with their current salaries.
What causes the gender pay gap? Men and women have different explanations. According to a different survey of 738 tech professionals conducted in February by software review site TrustRadius, 45 percent more women than men in tech think that discrimination and bias are the cause of the pay disparity, while three times as many men as women blame a difference in job performance.
Tekla S. Perry is a senior editor at IEEE Spectrum. Based in Palo Alto, Calif., she's been covering the people, companies, and technology that make Silicon Valley a special place for more than 40 years. An IEEE member, she holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Michigan State University.