Hired Releases State of Wage Inequality in the Tech Industry 2023 Report

Hired Releases State of Wage Inequality in the Tech Industry 2023 Report

Salary transparency laws show potential to reverse gender wage gaps in tech; DEI initiatives under threat amid economic uncertainty

Hired, an AI-driven marketplace matching tech and sales talent around the world with top companies, has released its 2023 Impact Report: State of Wage Inequality in the Tech Industry. The annual research study reveals economic volatility has reversed progress in diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives among organizations surveyed. In fact, 20% reported their organizations have already scaled back DEI initiatives. Another 12% admitted DEI programs are at risk if economic conditions continue.

What is the Expectation Gap? How does it affect the Wage Gap?

As Hired’s data continues to find, year over year, differences in salary expectations, or what’s known as the “expectation gap,” significantly contribute to the wage gap for underrepresented groups.

When people’s salary expectations are low, it frequently perpetuates lower wages. In the report, Hired explores why groups, such as women, have lower compensation expectations.

The wage gap, or the difference in salary between white males and underrepresented groups, continues to afflict the tech industry. 

Hispanic men, Black men, Hispanic women, and Black women saw widening gaps (earning $0.97, $0.93, $0.92, and $0.90; respectively; for every $1 a white male counterpart earns).

Meanwhile, Asian women and white women reported improvements in the expectation gap. It increased from $0.97 to $0.99 and $0.94 to $0.95; respectively, for every $1 a white male counterpart earns. These gains have driven improvements in the wage gap for both groups. 

Emerging data on salary legislation shows promise to reduce wage inequality in 2023

Despite the permeating wage gap issue, Hired’s data shows salary transparency legislation correlates with improved representation for women and reduced wage and expectation gaps. The report shares analysis in markets such as the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and New York City.

The San Francisco Bay Area saw the greatest improvement. It closed and reversed the wage gap from $0.95 (pre-legislation) to $1.02 (post-legislation). Wage gaps in Los Angeles and New York saw minor improvements (increasing from $0.97 to $0.98; and $0.97 to $0.98) respectively.   

Additional key findings from this year’s report include:

Bias remains in a majority of organizations despite DEI efforts.

Fifty-nine percent of surveyed hiring leaders reported hiring bias is down considerably from three years ago, while 56% say bias is still present in their workplaces. 

The gender wage gap widens as women accumulate more years of experience. 

While women with 2-4 years of experience have no expectation gap or wage gap, by 6-10 years, they earn $0.97 to every $1 earned by their white male counterparts. 

Lack of insight into market compensation puts women at a higher disadvantage in salary negotiations.

Only 25% of women felt they had the adequate knowledge and resources to request compensation in line with their market, role of interest, and skills and experience, compared to 39% of men. 

Salary transparency laws revealed many jobseekers’ wages are below market rate.

Nearly 40% of survey respondents (38% of men compared to 42% of women) shared they make less than disclosed market salary ranges.

Representation for women has significantly grown in some markets with salary transparency laws.

Women in Los Angeles also experienced a 15% reduction in underrepresentation; while women in New York City saw a 12% increase in representation after wage transparency laws took effect.

Representation for non-male, non-white individuals continues to fluctuate but shows signs of long-term improvement.

Up from 37% in 2021, 38% of positions only sent interview requests to men in 2022. Despite the slight slip in 2022, this remains an improvement from 2018-2020, when roughly 40% of roles sent zero interview requests to women.

Insight from Hired CEO Josh Brenner

“Recent economic volatility, concerns about the impact of automation and AI on jobs, and salary transparency laws have shaken up the tech workforce,” said Josh Brenner, CEO at Hired. “Unfortunately, many companies have deprioritized DEI initiatives, while wage inequality continues to disproportionately impact underrepresented groups.

Even when times are tough, we call on companies to commit to DEI hiring practices and ensure wage transparency within their organizations, regardless of legal requirements. In some markets, wage transparency’s impact appears to have closed and even reversed wage gaps. This is further proof of how important these practices and laws are to pay equity in tech.”

Hired’s seventh annual wage inequality report is based on:

  • Proprietary data from Hired’s platform including more than 860,000 interview requests for 64,000 positions between January 2018 through December 2022
  • A survey of more than 1,000 tech employees and candidates
  • A commissioned a double-blind survey of more than 200 technology hiring leaders in the United States.

Get the Report: State of Wage Inequality in the Tech Industry 2023.

About Hired

Hired is the most efficient way to fill tech and sales roles today. With unbiased insights, DEI tools, tech skill assessments, sourcing services, and dedicated Customer Success Managers, Hired works with companies around the world, placing more than 20,000 active and qualified candidates in new roles. Using better data, curated matches, ways to reach new markets and talent with higher acceptance rates, employers save an average of 45 sourcing hours per role using Hired’s solutions suite. Backed by The Adecco Group, Hired is rated by G2 as a leader in Recruiting Automation, Job Search Sites, and Diversity Recruiting.

Want to compare to past research? Here are the announcements of the 2022 and 2021 Wage Inequality data reports.