25% of women surveyed by Network Ireland said that their male colleagues earn more in equivalent roles.
Women considering a new job or a change in career path favour flexible working hours over a pay increase, a new study has suggested.
430 women were surveyed by Network Ireland, a non-profit group that provides support to women entrepreneurs and business leaders and found that flexibility is the most important factor that female professionals take into consideration when calculating their next career move or professional opportunity.
President of Network Ireland, Helen Wycherley said that this reflects a growing shift away from the traditional nine-to-five workday that has been observed in the wider labour market.
“Flexibility works very well, for women in particular,” Wycherley said, noting that adjustable work hours can assist female employees balance their career with other commitments as women are often the primary caregivers at home.
Wycherley said it is important for employers to recognise that many women seek part time work and the option to job share.
She also mentioned the fact that flexibility was more desirable than an increase in salary in Network Ireland’s survey suggested that “people need to be able to work when suits them”.
The majority of the 430 respondents said that they found it difficult to switch off, with four out of five saying they have answered work emails outside of work hours. Working parents said supports such as flexibility and affordable childcare would make things much easier.
A quarter of those that were surveyed reported that their male counterparts are paid more for the same job in their place of work. Wycherley claimed this is because women often lack the confidence to ask for a pay rise.
“It’s not acceptable for people to get paid different wages for the same work,” she said.
The vast majority of survey respondents said that there needs to be more women in senior roles in Irish workplaces. 25% said that companies should offer female employees more mentoring.
“(Mentoring) doesn’t have to be too prescriptive,” Wycherly said, adding that it comes down to highlighting people within an organisation who can share their skills and knowledge with others.
“It’s (about) giving women the opportunities to excel in their own careers, to be able to ensure that all women are given the opportunity to put themselves forward for promotions, for training and for companies being more proactive about what they can do and offer rather than people coming to them,” she added.