Pandemic Could Worsen the Gender Pay Gap | SHRM + Payscale

Workforce Trends

While the pandemic continues to impact the lives of many in a variety of ways and at varying levels of magnitude, much has been reported about the disproportionate impact that the crisis has had on working women. In many cases, working women are more likely to have to take time off from work or resign from their positions to care for children and other family members. And as the pandemic continues, this issue will become more acute, exacerbating the pre-COVID gender pay disparity. This article highlights a few studies on this topic, including one by Payscale that found that women often incur a pay penalty on returning to work after a prolonged absence—earning 7 percent less on average than men in the same position. The gender pay gap is wider for women of color, women in executive-level roles, women in certain occupations and industries, and some US states. The Payscale report also looks at the top 20 jobs with the highest gender pay gap. As referenced in this article, “the pressure is on business leaders to reassess their compensation systems to create an equitable environment for women within their companies and to keep society from taking major steps back in gender equality.”

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