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Gender pay gap in IT sector is 29%

Strong need to create equal opportunities for all employees and specially women: NASSCOM President

BS Reporter  |  Chennai 

The gender pay gap in the information technology (IT) sector is as high as 29 per cent, according to Monster Salary Index (MSI). While a male employee in the sector receives a gross salary of Rs 359.25 per hour, a woman receives Rs 254.04 per hour. This disparity possibly emerges from the fact that men get promoted to supervisory positions more often than women. Reacting to the report, industry experts said there was a need to create equal opportunities for all employees, irrespective of their gender. Women contribute significantly to the industry. MSI was an initiative by Monster India in collaboration with (managed by WageIndicator Foundation). Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, is a research partner in the initiative. Sanjay Modi, managing director (India/West Asia/ Southeast Asia/Hong Kong),, said, “Among many other aspects that the report has highlighted - the revelation is the enormous gender gap in IT sector, which employs only 30 per cent women. It is surprising to see that the most modern sector of India is not only predisposed to a certain gender but is also paying lesser to women employees than their male counterparts with a grave pay gap of 29 per cent.”

He added, in India, marital status can be cited as a reason for lack of opportunities and growth avenues for a gender. Also with the socio-cultural mindset, women often prefer or are compelled to take up part-time jobs because it is expected that they fulfill primary responsibility of taking care of household activities and children.

The report also stated that the tenure of an employee with an organisation is a compelling factor that sways the salary of an employee.

More experienced workers are paid better than less experienced ones.

On an average an employee with less than three years of experience gets Rs 142.97 per hour and an employee with more than 10 years of experience gets Rs 625.55 per hour.

"Women have started being active in the IT sector only recently and are also likely to find it harder to accumulate tenure due to family obligations. Re-entry to the job market is difficult for women and they are often paid less when they decide to enter the labour market again. With more number of career breaks in their job history, the negotiating capacity of women in the labour market declines. Hence, men with similar experience earn higher salary as compared to women," said in the report.

R Chandrasekhar, president, NASSCOM said "this is an insightful report that will help us to delve deeper to understand the scenario of talent in the Indian IT ecosystem; enabling us to draw insights on the growth opportunities of the sector and salary parameters. This report highlights the strong need to create equal opportunities for all employees and specially women who are a key contributor to the industry, as it would pave the path for new avenues in developing the economic scenario."

Another insight of this report is that male workers with permanent contracts get paid better than those employed for a limited time.

Women employed for a limited time get paid better than those with permanent contracts as a measure taken by corporates to sustain talent. The other influencing factors are company size and ownership. It is observed that wholly owned foreign pay higher salaries. In India about 65% of workforce in IT sector works in large to mid-sized with more than 5,000 employees.

First Published: Thu, July 24 2014. 00:43 IST