Spiceworks today released the results of its latest survey, which reveals that the gender pay gap also affects women with careers in IT.
The IT management software provider and network of technology professionals recently polled 600 IT workers in the U.S. and found that 82 percent of female respondents have a college degree, having completed an associate's degree or higher. By comparison, sixty-nine percent of males have a college degree. Among all IT workers with a degree, computer and information sciences degrees were the most common (71 percent).
Despite the educational edge, women are often being paid less than men.
Full-time women IT workers get six percent less in compensation than men. Spicework's study notes that the pay gap is narrower in IT than in other careers, citing data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Across all industries, women typically take home paychecks that are 20 percent smaller than those of their male colleagues.
Tech-savvy women are also likelier to become "accidental IT pros," with 53 percent of women falling into the role compared to 26 percent of men. In fact, 29 percent of all respondents said they never intended to pursue a career in IT. Yet most folks plan on sticking with their IT careers for the long haul (66 percent).
Although IT skills are in demand and can often lead to well-paying jobs, Spiceworks' data suggests that not all technology professionals are living large.
Most IT professionals earn less than $75,000 a year and only three percent take home salaries in six-figure range. Ten percent said they make between $75,000 and $99,999 per year while 34 percent said they earned between $50,000 and $74,999. Another 34 percent said they took home between $35,000 and $49,999. Seventeen percent earn less than $35,000 a year.
In the end, many IT professionals are disappointed with how little they're getting paid. Forty-one percent of respondents said they weren't being compensated fairly.
"CIOs and IT managers are largely responsible for staffing their organizations with skilled tech workers. However, IT skills are currently in high demand, so retaining top tech talent is becoming more of a challenge," Peter Tsai, senior technology analyst at Spiceworks, told Datamation. "The fact is the job market currently favors tech workers, and many of them feel underpaid."
Business leaders seeking to retain skilled IT workers in a competitive job market may want to start tackling wage equality at their organizations.
"The compensation disparity between what IT pros make now and what they could earn elsewhere is especially evident among women in IT due to the current gender pay gap," Tsai continued. "Therefore, unless companies are willing to compensate appropriately based on IT skills and experience, and without bias toward gender, they run the risk of having IT talent jump ship in search of greener and higher-paying pastures."
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.