2017-2018 was a good year in terms of progression towards gender equality in Australia. We experienced the largest single-year drop of 21.3% in the gender pay gap in five years. Promotions of women experienced another steady rise as well.
But it’s not all good news. Women in leadership and pay gap in construction and health have either stalled or gone in the wrong direction.
While more companies are increasing their focus and commitment to improve gender parity, we don’t believe it’s going to be achieved any time soon. Interestingly though, there are some fields that have emerged as empowering women into leadership, opening previously inaccessible opportunities for career-driven females.
We have included the top 3 professional fields for the women who are looking for a field where they can plant their flag and conquer! We have excluded more administration or carer roles that women typically dominate in; we instead focused on industries where women can become executives and/or earn over $150,000 in annual salary.
#1. Marketing / PR
According to the World PR 2017 Report, two thirds of the global PR industry is dominated by female. Yet, most agencies Board members and CEOs are still mostly male. It is clear, still, that more women have made into leadership roles in PR – with 44% of global agency leadership teams being female.
In addition, some experts strongly believe that the women will control up to 75 per cent of global discretionary spending by 2028, a whopping $28 trillion economy. According to an Australian gender intelligence specialist Bec Brideson, most brands are failing miserably at preparing for this shift in their target demographics and a lucrative opportunity rising from it.
These trends indicate strong potential for focus on female representation in Marketing and PR leadership so companies are better poised to appeal to the new target clientele. Women in Marketing / PR can make a strong case for their promotion and pathway to being an executive, whether it be in-house or at an agency.
Interested in switching to this role? Make sure you get qualification and training on marketing and communications as well as social media outreach and analytics.
#2. Health Care
Typically, the field of carers, nurses, and midwives is heavily female-dominated, likely with about 80% of the workforce being women. So recommending ‘nursing’ as a field might seem unoriginal. However, there is a wave of new opportunities that are opening doors to a previously unreachable female empowerment.
As the largest health care workforce, nurses always had a lot of influence in the clinical and hospital spheres. But with continued staffing shortage which is expected to only get worse, hospital management is relying more on nurses and nursing executives for their guidance on a wider scope of executive decisions so that the hospital is able to attract nursing talents and improve their clinical productivity.
Ex-nurses are taking on more senior leadership roles in surprising areas such as governmental bodies as policy advisors. Although, not yet in Australia, over 33 nurses in the United States have become hospital CEOs, sending waves of hopeful message out there that the glass ceiling can really be shattered. There is a growingly louder voice within Australia too that there really ought to be more nurses in the Boardrooms and executive teams.
If you are interested in starting your career in the revitalised world of health care (especially for women), look into how you can attain a Graduate Certificate of Nursing online.
#3. Education and Training
Six decades ago, women only made up one-fifth of all university students in Australia. By the early 21st century, women were equally represented in both students and university staff (and professors). In addition, women take up 50% of the positions in leadership or management.
The field also supports working mums, with the highest % of employers offering primary carer leave (in addition to the government scheme).
With the rise of education tech, now there are more lucrative career opportunities for women to be CEOs, advisers, Board members, deans, education instruction creators, etc.
Pursuing this field, however, often requires advanced degrees and qualifications although universities would often hire industry veterans without teaching experience. Check out this list to see various pathways within education and training and their entry requirements.
SheSociety is a site for the women of Australia to share our stories, our experiences, shared learnings and opportunities to connect.