Study Shows Vast Majority of People Are Still in Denial of Gender Pay Gap

The persistent pay inequality between the sexes has been a (much overdue) hot topic as of late.

But that doesn’t mean everyone thinks there’s a problem – at least, not in their workplace.

Despite the telling statistics that highlight the prevalence of wage disparities (according to the World Economic Forum, as of 2015, Canada is still ranked 30th out of 145 countries in gender pay equality), an outcry from Hollywood, and a growing number of  awareness campaigns, a new Glassdoor survey finds that a surprising 7 out of 10 employed adults in seven first world countries believe men and women are paid equally for equal work by their employer.

Suffice to say, these perceptions of the gender pay gap don’t correlate with reality – especially when it comes to the men’s ideas.

Seventy per cent of women believe that there is equal pay for equal work at their workplace, compared to 77 percent of men.

The good news is that nearly everyone believes both men and women should receive equal pay for equal work. Conducted in the US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, The Netherlands, and Switzerland, the survey also found that the majority of employed adults (89 percent) believe that men and women should be paid equally for equal work. As for the other 11 per cent, apparently this dwindling minority is living in our high school history textbooks.

When asked whether they’d work at a company where a pay gap existed, three out of five employees said they wouldn’t. Not surprisingly, women are less likely than men to apply for a job if they believe that a gender pay gap exists. Also unsurprisingly, in the US, UK, and Canada, younger adults are less likely to apply for a job if a pay gap exists.

The survey also questioned respondents on what would help improve the gender pay gap. More than one-third (39 per cent ) point to the need for government legislation that requires employers to pay all people equally for equal work and experience levels. This was the most popular response in Canada (38 per cent), UK (41 per cent), France (33 per cent), Germany (41 per cent), The Netherlands (33 per cent), and Switzerland (40 per cent).

The survey also suggests that companies hoping to attract the best talent should be transparent about their compensation practices.