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Researchers identified the top 10 occupations where women could earn more than men, using gender pay gap data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

In community and civil enforcement occupations, women earned an average of £3.61 more per hour than men in the same role – a 28.9% pay gap.

Welfare professionals ranked second with a pay gap of 20.9% (£3.59 per hour). In third place, biological scientists had a 20.6% gap.

The gender pay gap is a global economic issue affecting women in every country. Most recent estimates suggest women earn on average 16% less than their male counterparts globally , although this percentage is far greater in many places.

Liz Sebag-Montefiore, director and cofounder of the HR consultancy 10eighty, told HR magazine that the reason women earn higher in certain occupations could be due to there being more women working in those sectors. This would mean that women in those sectors are more likely to reach senior positions and pay grades.

She said: “There are more women in some types of job. Where women heavily outnumber men, it’s not surprising that women earn more, because there are fewer data points from men to compare against.

“Given that women are outperforming men at university, hopefully the gender pay gap will continue to narrow.”

She advised companies to look for patterns and outliers in the data of their workforce, to ensure that employees are paid fairly and equitably.

She said: “Use job evaluations to measure the value of different jobs, and identify any that count as ‘equal work‘.

“Look at pay, and contractual terms and conditions, to see if there are any differences between men and women. Investigate any areas where there may be a pay differential based on gender or other protected characteristics.”

The top 10 sectors where women earn more than men:

  1. Community and civil enforcement occupations (28.9%)

  2. Welfare professionals (20.9%)

  3. Biological scientists (20.6%)

  4. Hire services managers and proprietors (20.3%)

  5. Personal assistants and other secretaries (17.1%)

  6. Special needs education teaching professionals (16.8%)

  7. Veterinarians (14.3%)

  8. Occupational therapists (13.2%)

  9. Social humanities scientists (12.4%)

  10. Publicans and managers of licensed premises (11.4%)

Data from November 2023 from the ONS was analysed to determine the ranking.

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