Israeli high tech is still almost completely dominated by men. The proportion of women entrepreneurs, those founding and/or managing startups, is estimated at a mere 10%. Figures compiled by the Ethosia research company for women in 2016 show a minor improvement.
The proportion of women programmers in the industry in Israel is currently 22%, but the trend is encouraging, with the figures showing a consistent increase in the proportion. The proportion of women engineers, which was only 13% among those born in the 1950s, more than tripled to 37% among those born in the 1990s. An examination of the average salary shows discrimination against women in every position. Ethosia focused on workers with 5-8 years of experience in a variety of jobs. At the end of 2016, the average monthly salary of women working in development for mobile communications was NIS 22,100, compared with a NIS 24,700 average for men. The proportions of men and women working in mobile development were 60% and 40%, respectively.
Women are significantly under-represented, especially in senior positions. According to Ethosia's figures, only 15% of managers are women; the rest are men. Wage differentials are also present in these positions; women managers earn an average of NIS 39,300 per month, compared with NIS 43,800 for men.
Salary differentials are still present even in areas in which the number of women is almost equal to the number of men. 49% of marketing managers are women, but their monthly salaries average NIS 21,900, compared with NIS 27,600 for men in the same positions. Women account for 48% of software testing employees, but their monthly salaries average NIS 17,900, compared with NIS 18,400 for men.
One position in high tech is traditionally associated with women - human resources manager. Ethosia's figures show that the proportion of women in this position is an impressive 72%, but their salaries are inferior to men's salaries even here: NIS 15,300 a month for women and NIS 16,200 a month for men.
Ethosia CEO Eyal Solomon prefers to look at the positive side, commenting, "We're seeing a positive trend that is no less than a revolution. Women accounted for only 43% of high-tech employees at the beginning of the year, and most of them were employed in non-core high-tech jobs, such as administration, human resources, economics, and operations. The number of women in core high-tech positions grew by the end of 2016, with a 2% rise in the number of women employed in engineering and research and development, where they now account for 19% of the total."
Solomon added, "This is a minimal increase, but a more profound look at higher education shows an increase in the number of women students in the sciences and engineering. We can be optimistic and predict that this trend will continue in the coming years."
Published by Globes [online], Israel Business News - www.globes-online.com - on January 2, 2017
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