Compatibility of work and family in the comparison with Europe: Germany is almost the end of the salary

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The gender pay gap is particularly drastic in mothers in Germany. A recent study by Glassdoor Economic Research examines, in addition to these "maternity costs", 11 further factors concerning the issue of equality at work in a total of 18 countries. The results reveal that women in Scandinavia are much better off in the job than they are here.

Working mothers

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Fritzi Roth_GlassdoorDACH Fritzi Roth is a product specialist at Glassdoor DA-CH.


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Indirect costs of maternity only higher in Ireland than in Germany

Professional mothers tend to receive a lower salary than childless workers. The Gender Pay Gap compared to the averagely better-earning men is scarcely 23 percent higher for women with at least one child than for childless women.

This salary difference, with 31 percentage points (PP), is even greater in Ireland than in Germany. In Italy, Spain and Belgium (3 PP and lower), the indirect cost of maternity is the lowest in Europe. This is shown by the recent study "Which Countries in Europe Have the Best Gender Equality in the Workplace?" By Glassdoor Economic Research.

Gender pay gap with mothers

Equality at the workplace: catching up demand in Germany

The study examined a total of 12 key indicators on equality between the sexes, including the employment rate, the employment rate and the quota in management positions. Equality in the workplace was compared in 18 countries on the basis of OECD and Eurostat data. In the ranking, Germany is in fourth place.

Examples such as Sweden, Norway and Finland prove that it is possible to achieve an almost balanced relationship between employed men and women. This balance in the labor market can serve as a model for other countries. However, a positive example such as Norway shows that no country is perfect: the indirect costs of maternity are almost as high as in Germany.

Comparison of equal opportunities in the workplace

Gender gap in employment rates

With regard to the employment rate, Germany is in the middle: the gap between the rate for men and women amounts to 9 percentage points (PP). In Italy and Greece there are the largest differences between the sexes in this category, while the labor markets in Finland, Sweden and Norway are significantly more balanced.

Taking into account the full-time employment rate, the gender gap once again increases significantly and is two to three times higher than the general employment rate. This means that there is a large gender-specific difference in the length of working hours, and a fixed rate for women is on average less likely. However, at this point, the degree of training is also a central influencing factor. For women with a university degree, the gender gap is only half as high as for women without a higher education.

Women's quota: Still underrepresented in the Management Board

The European comparison shows that in Sweden, Norway, Great Britain and Portugal, almost 40 per cent of employees are female at management level. In Germany, the rate is 30 percent, whereas the percentage of women in management positions in the Netherlands is the lowest with 26 percent.

Also on board level, women are underrepresented with a share of below 40 percent. In Norway the quota with 36 percent is still the highest, which is partly due to a corresponding legally regulated women's rate from the year 2006. France, Finland and Sweden followed by a women's share of approximately 30 per cent. In Germany, the rate is at 26 percent, whereby it should be noted here that the legislator was also active at the beginning of the year with the law for the equitable participation of women and men in leadership positions (the data taken from the Glassdoor study are from the year 2015).

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