Inequality of Men and Women in the Workplace Research Paper

Excerpt from Research Paper :

Gender Inequality at Workplace

We live in a modern world, a world of advancements and developments. The present era has witnessed the greatest developments of human society and people claim that this era is just and free of inequalities. Despite the large scale developments and the transition to modernism, various inequalities and discriminations, such as racial and socioeconomic disparities, still exist in the society. Gender discrimination, can be regarded as one of the contemporary social problems. In this inequality, the oppressed party, usually the women, suffers a lot. They have to face various issues in relation to education, job opportunities, wage and benefits and unequal treatment. It has been reported by various studies that in the case of recruitment, employers prefer to employ male candidates more as compared to female candidates. In addition to that, the requirements for female candidates are set so high that they find it very difficult to get the job. (Lui and Chang, 2013)

Apart from that it has also been reported by a number of studies that wide pay gaps exist between male and female employees. Male employees earn far more than female employees while working at the same designation. This case of gender inequality is not persistent in one country or several countries of the same zone or kind. Instead, it has been reported that gender inequality at work persists over the entire globe. (Lui and Chang, 2013)

It has also been reported by a study that organizations usually hesitate to employ women at the work place because of their perception that they invest considerable amount of time and money in training employees and when women get a leave due to pregnancy, they lose most of their skills. However, when seen from an ethical point-of-view, the appropriate role of mothering is very essential for the betterment of the society and when women leave to perform this role, they instill all their skills and capabilities in the next generation and this in turn benefits the society as a whole. (Unknown, 2012)

It has also been observed that in the United States of America, women face more challenges in the workplace as compared to the male employees. In addition to that, if an employee is a mother as well then she has to tackle many obstacles in order to fulfill the requirements of the job. Despite all these obstacles, women are reported to start new businesses at a rate which is twice the rate at which men are starting new businesses. The constant increase in the number of female employers or entrepreneurs highlights the fact that women are capable enough to handle economic duties, but still they are very often considered as less worthy than men and are paid less for their efforts. (Unknown, 2012)

Men are usually paid more due to the conservative argument that they provide for the living of the household. But a recent survey indicated that in the United States of America, forty one percent of the women are the sole 'bread earners' of their family. In addition to that, it was also observed that female workers contributed eighty three percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the United States of America. Women usually bear the expenses that men with high income do not. In spite of all these difficulties, the government stopped the programs that helped the women in providing aid to their children. In addition to that, the funds that were to be utilized in the 'Women Business Development Plan' were also cut off. (Unknown, 2012).

A study conducted in the United States of America disclosed the following facts in relation to gender discrimination;

1. During the period of recession, it is more likely for women to be unemployed than men. (Unknown, 2012)

2. When companies go for downsizing, the companies prefer to lay off female employees rather than male employees. (Unknown, 2012)

3. Women usually have low wages as compared to men. In addition to that, a larger number of women are reported to be employed at part time jobs as compared to men. (Unknown, 2012)

4. A smaller number of women are reported to have been eligible for unemployment benefits than men. This is because women usually earn lower wages and most of them are paid for part time hours. (Unknown, 2012)

5. During the times of recession, the salaries of women are reported to drop by three percent, whereas, that of men remain stagnant or at the same level. (Unknown, 2012)

6. When employed at the same designation or the same post, for every dollar that is being earned by male employees, female employees are reported to earn only seventy seven cents. (Unknown, 2012)

7. Women are also reported to be less likely to get eligible for employee benefits and retirement plans. (Unknown, 2012)

8. According to a study conducted by the Harvard University, the net worth of an unmarried woman was reported to be $12,900, whereas, that of an unmarried man was $26,850. The major reason behind the net worth of men and women was reported to be the wage gap between these genders. (Unknown, 2012)

9. As the women earn lower wages but they have to incur higher expenses, therefore, women have fewer savings than men. (Unknown, 2012)

Although, the conditions of gender discrimination at workplace are said to be improving in the United States of America, but still we have a long way to go as depicted by the above facts. The women, who are victims of economic discrimination, are more likely to be the victims of domestic abuse because they are not economically autonomous and hence these victims have to go through a huge range of obstacles in order to sustain in the competitive environment of the present era. (Unknown, 2012)

Following factors represent the extent of gender gap or inequality at work place in the United States of America;

Environment of the Current Workforce

Currently, women constitute about forty eight percent of the total workforce, whereas, men contribute fifty two percent to the workforce. The participation of male and female employees at middle and lower management is almost equal, but the situation at the top level management is somewhat different. In addition to that, women also earn lower wages than men. (Parcheta and Kaifi et al., 2013). About sixty two percent of all the women are employed in the workforce. The contribution of women at top level management is only forty three percent, whereas, that of men is fifty seven percent. (Unknown, 2012)

Glass Ceiling Commission

Apart from the fact that women earn less than men when employed at the same designation, they have also reported to hit the so called 'glass ceiling' in their attempts to get a place in the top level management. This term was made popular by the 'Wall Street Journal'. It is used to describe the transparent or invisible boundary that stops or hinders women from getting a position in the top level management. Usually the people who are promoted to the top level management come from the area of finance, sales and production department. But women are generally employed in the area of human resource management and administration and hence they have very low chances of getting promoted to the top level management. (Parcheta and Kaifi et al., 2013)

The Pay Gap Between the Genders

Most of the critics argue that the pay gap exists between male and female employees due to their own personal choices. According to a study conducted by the American Association of University Women (AAUW), one year after their graduation, female employees were earning only eighty two percent of what their male batch mates were earning. Another report suggested that ten years after their graduation female workers earn sixty nine percent of what their male counterparts are being paid. (Hallman, 2013)

This pay gap exists partially because of the choices made by the men and women, especially in relation to the college major and the type of the job they wish to pursue. For example, women usually go for teaching, whereas, men opt for technical jobs. The pay that is being given to the teachers is lower than that of the technical workers and this lead towards the pay gap between these genders. (Hallman, 2013)

Apart from the choice of employment and college major, it has been reported by the researchers seven percent of the pay gap that exist between the genders, one year after the graduation, is unexplained and about twelve percent of the pay gap that exist between the genders, ten years after the graduation is unexplained. Apart from that, parenthood is a matter of choice but it has different outcomes for male and female employees. It was reported by a study that twenty three percent of the female employees left the job after becoming a mother, whereas, seventeen percent pursued a part time job. In contrast to that only one percent of the male employees left the workforce and only two percent pursued a part time job. In…

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