Women Who Code Study Reveals Lack of Compensation, Fulfillment, and Equality Major Factors for Women Technologists in Great Resignation
ATLANTA - APRIL 12, 2022 —Women Who Code (WWCode), the largest and most active community of women technologists in the world, has released its annual Equal Pay Report for 2022. Participants were asked about work, salary, equality, and the wage gap, with a focus on the Great Resignation and the effect it has had on women working in the technology industry. It reveals some of the major factors contributing to the higher rates of attrition among women while suggesting ways companies can improve employee satisfaction and retention.
The 2022 Equal Pay Survey was conducted from February 14, 2022, to March 4, 2022, and consisted of people located in 44 countries, with more than half of respondents coming from the United States and 51% being women of color. They were highly educated, with 90% holding at least a Bachelor’s degree and 46% having at least 5 years of coding experience.
“When Women Who Code conducts our annual Equal Pay Survey, we are always looking for key factors that diverse women working in tech identify to be the causes and consequences of salary inequality,” said Joey Rosenberg, Women Who Code President, Product and Communications. “With the Great Resignation causing dramatic shifts in workplace dynamics, we were particularly interested in learning about how companies can better retain top talent. We learned that key factors are total compensation, work-life balance, and remote work flexibility, with salary transparency believed to be a key driver of pay equality.”
While results varied based on age, ethnicity, and experience level, the study showed that the majority of women in tech do not believe that their current companies are doing enough to support the things they value at work. Advancement and compensation were some of the key factors, with 82% reporting that they are dissatisfied with their current salary, and the same number saying they do not have access to training opportunities.
Only 19% of respondents said they could find mentors, but that dropped to 7% when looking for mentors like them. Related is a lack of positive workplace culture, with 74% of people feeling that their company was not doing enough to build an inclusive environment. There is also a marked lack of engagement at work, with 77% of people feeling that their job doesn’t use their skills and only 23% feeling that they are engaged at work.
When asking for more information about the experiences of women who have recently left their job in tech, we discovered some insights that could be consequential to businesses looking to do better at retention of women technologists. 42% of women in tech changed jobs in 2021, mainly due to having better opportunities elsewhere, and 23% left the workforce entirely. 42% said they left a job due, at least partially, to inequality, and 16% shared personal experiences of unequal treatment at work.
The indication is that the high turnover of women in tech recently is not only due to global events, but to pre-existing dissatisfaction with current roles, companies, and corporate policies. With 42% of those who quit last year looking to pursue opportunities at other companies, it indicates that they are still looking to be employed. It is also important to remember that 50% of all women have been leaving the tech industry by mid-career since far before the pandemic, which shows that this is not a new issue.
When asked what was most important to them at work, 77% of women technologists cited total overall compensation, which aligns closely to the number who said they were currently dissatisfied with their salaries. 62% said that they most valued work-life balance, and 43% expressed the need to be able to work remotely. This may be a result of the pandemic quarantine that will continue to be a major factor for employees going forward. 44% responded that professional development was most important to them.
An anomaly that was noticed during the intake of these results was a sharp decline in respondents starting on February 24th, corresponding to the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This continued through the end period of the survey and may indicate a shift in public priorities, as well as that of the women in the technology community as attention became focused on the global conflict.
The Women Who Code Equal Pay Survey has been conducted since 2018 and is an annual report designed to better understand and amplify the perspectives of professional women in the technology industry.
About Women Who Code
Women Who Code (WWCode) is an international nonprofit dedicated to inspiring women to excel in technology careers. WWCode is building a world where women are proportionally representative as technical leaders, executives, founders, VCs, board members, and software engineers. The organization has executed more than 14,000 free events around the world, and garnered a membership exceeding 290,000 in 134 countries. Help empower even more women to advance in tech with the training and community they need to succeed by supporting WWCode. Learn more at womenwhocode.com.