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Statistics on women in business (Australia and International)

by Kasia Gospos on November 28, 2012
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We have collected a number of statistics on women in business. These include statistics about both women entrepreneurs, women in employment and women in leadership. Most of the research has been conducted in Australia and the United States. If you know of any other statistics please let us know by commenting or emailing us. We would love to include them here.

Women in Business  in Australia

  • Gender Pay gap in Australia is currently (August 2014)  18.2% (up from 17.5% this time last year) which means the average man working full-time earns 18.2% or $283.20 more than the average full-time working woman. Source WGEA

ASX200 in 2014

  • The percentage of women on ASX 200 boards as at 31 August 2014 is 18.6% 
  • A total of 36 boards in the ASX 200 still do not have any women
  • Women have comprised 29% of new appointments to ASX 200 boards to date in 2014 (30  2014).
  • Women are significantly better represented in NFPs than they are in public listed companies.
  • As at 30 June 2013, women held 41.7% of Australian Government board appointments.

Source: Australian Institute of Company Directors

Boardroom Diversity Index – Women on Boards

ASX200 in 2013

  • 15.8 per cent of board positions are held by women
  • 25 per cent (50) of companies do not have a woman on their board
  • 23.5 per cent (47) of companies have met the Women on Boards target of having 25 per cent female directors

ASX100 in 2013

  • The top 100 companies have 831 board positions of which 154 (18.5%) are held by women.
  • There are eight companies in the ASX100 without a female director.

2012 Australian Census of Women in Leadership EOWA

Women as senior executives

  • Women hold 9.7% of executive key management personnel (executive KMP)positions in the ASX 200, up from 8.0% in 2010.
    63.1 ASX 500 companies have no female executive KMP Statistics on women in business
  • Women hold 9.2% of executive KMP positions in the ASX 500.
  • The percentage of ASX 200 companies with at least one female executive KMP has increased to 39.4% in 2012, up from 38.1% in 2010 (3.4% increase on 2010).
  • For the ASX 500, 36.9% have one or more female executive KMP.
  • 60.6% of ASX 200 companies do not have any female executive KMP, similar to 61.9% of companies in 2010. For the ASX 500, 63.1% do not have any female executive KMP.
  • There are seven female CEOs in the ASX 200 (compared to six in 2010) and a total of 12 in the ASX 500.
  • There is no relationship between the number of female executive KMP and company size.56,2% ASX 500 companies have no female directors
  • In the ASX 200, women’s representation in line management positions is 6.0% and in support positions, 22.0%. In the ASX 500, women’s representation in line management positions is 6.2% and in support positions, 22.5%. (*A significant pathway to board and CEO positions is via line management.)
  • The industry sector with the highest percentage of female executive KMP across both the ASX 200 and the ASX 500 is the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and life sciences industry.

Women on boards

Women in business statistics - women on boards

  • Women hold 12.3% of ASX 200 directorships, up from 8.4% in 2010.
  • Women hold 9.2% of ASX 500 directorships.
  • The number of ASX 200 directorships held by women has increased substantially (46.4% increase on 2010) for the first time since the inaugural Census was conducted in 2002.
  • The percentage of ASX 200 companies with at least one female director has also increased, to 61.5% in 2012, up from 46.0% in 2010 (33.7% increase on 2010). For the ASX 500, 43.8% have one or more female directors.
  • 38.5% of ASX 200 companies and 56.2% of ASX 500 companies do not have a female director.
  • There are six female chairs in the ASX 200 (compared to five in 2010) and a total of 13 in the ASX 500.
  • Larger companies are more likely to have more female directors.
  • The industry sectors with the highest percentage of female directors across both the ASX 200 and ASX 500 are the insurance and banking industries.

Women on boards EOWA Census 2012 Statistics on women in business

Other Census findings

  • Women are under-represented in the pipeline to senior leadership, especially in crucial line management roles. Men hold 2,148 line positions in the ASX 500; women hold 141 line positions.
  • Female directors are more likely than male directors to hold multiple directorships: 23.3% of female directors of ASX 500 companies hold more than one directorship, compared to 14.3% of male directors.
  • Pharmaceutical biotech and life sciences, consumer services, transportation, diversified financials, and retailing are the top five industries in the ASX 500 for female executive appointments (ranging from 14.1% to 22.2%).
  • Consumer durables and apparel, utilities, capital goods, energy, and materials (dominated by mining) are the five worst performing industries in the ASX 500 for female executive appointments (ranging from zero to 6.4%).

Source: 2012 Australian Census of Women in Leadership

EOWA Industry Verticals 2011

In 2011 EOWA reported (Industry Verticals (2011))  that women represented only:

  • 13% of managers in mining (and only 15.1% of total employees)
  • 16% of managers in construction (and only 11.8% of total employees)
  • 16% of managers in utilities (and only 22.6% of total employees)

Other Statistics on Women in Business – Australia

  • Women in Australia currently earn approximately 82 cents in the male dollar (full-time adult ordinary time earnings) and the gender gap in pay has widened over the last four years.ABS, Average Weekly Earnings, Australia, February 2010 Catalogue No 6302.0 (2010).
  • Between 2008 and 2009, Australia’s international ranking for women’s participation in the workforce dropped from 40th to 50th position World Economic Forum
  • Women spend almost three times as many hours per week looking after children as men.(ABS, How Australians Use Their Time 2006, Catalogue No. 4153.0, (2008)
  • Average superannuation payouts for women are less than half that received by men – $63,000 compared with $136,000. R Clare, The Age Pension, superannuation and Australian retirement incomes (2009), p 22, At
  • Women make up 73% of Single Age Pension recipients

Women in business statistics – The United States

Source: Catalyst Research

Key Facts about Women-Owned Businesses 2008-2009

The Overall Picture: 2008-2009

  • 10.1 million firms are owned by women (50% or more), employing more than 13 million people, and generating $1.9 trillion in sales as of 2008.
  • Three quarters of all women-owned businesses are majority owned by women (51% or more), for a total of 7.2 million firms, employing 7.3 million people, and generating $1.1 trillion in sales.
  • Women-owned firms (50% or more) account for 40% of all privately held firms.

Businesses Owned by Women of Color

  • 1.9 million firms are majority-owned (51% or more) by women of color in the U.S.
  • These firms employ 1.2 million people and generate $165 billion in revenues annually.

Million Dollar Businesses

  • One in five firms with revenue of $1 million or more is woman-owned.
  • 3% of all women-owned firms have revenues of $1 million or more compared with 6% of men-owned firms.

Source: Center of Women’s Business Research 2008-2009

Key Facts about Women-Owned Businesses 2007

The Overall Picture

  • Nearly 10.4 million firms are owned by women (50% or more), employing more than 12.8 million people, and generating $1.9 trillion in sales.
  • Three quarters of all women-owned businesses are majority owned by women (51% or more), for a total of 7.7 million firms, employing more than 7.1 million people, and generating $1.1 trillion in sales.
  • For the past two decades, majority women-owned firms have continued to grow at around two times the rate of all firms (42% vs. 24%).
  • Women-owned firms, 50% or more owned by women, account for 41% of all privately held firms.

Businesses Owned by Women of Color

  • There are 2.4 million firms owned 50% or more by women of color in the U.S., employing 1.6 million people and generating nearly $230 billion in sales annually.
  • Between 1997 and 2006 the number of privately held firms 51% or more owned by women of color grew five times faster than all privately held firms (120% vs. 24%).
  • Women of color own 42% of all firms owned by persons of color, up from 36% in 2004.
  • Asian women employer firms have the highest survival rate of all women-owned firms: 77% of their businesses in operation in 1997 remained in business in 2000.

Technology and Business Growth

  • The vast majority (83%) of women business owners are personally involved in selecting and purchasing technology for their businesses.
  • Women business owners’ top concerns about technology are the protection and security of data.
    Security of internet purchase: 82%
    Computer viruses: 81%
    Protecting business data: 77%
    General system failure:73%
  • Contrary to common perception, women business owners are as likely as men business owners to be willing to adopt new technology and more likely (24% vs. 18%) than women in general.
  • Women business owners value technology as a means to create workplace flexibility:
    61% use technology to integrate the responsibilities of work and home.
    44% use technology to enable employees to work offsite or to have flexible work schedules.

Million Dollar Businesses

  • 3% of all women-owned firms have revenues of $1 million or more compared with 6% of men-owned firms.
  • Women-owned firms with revenues of $1 million or more are more likely than other women-owned businesses to market their products and services nationally.
  • Women owners of firms with revenues of $1 million or higher embrace financial measurements as management tools and produce more financial reports more often.

Women-Owned Businesses Without Employees

  • Seventy-five percent of all firms do not have employees; similarly, 81% of women-owned firms are without employees, for a total of 5.4 million firms.
  • Sales revenue increased 66% for women-owned firms without employees from 1997-2004, compared to 42% for all such firms.
  • Women-owned firms without employees generate more than $167 billion in annual sales (as of 2004).

Exit Strategies of Women Business Owners

  • Women and men business owners are equally concerned about price when selling their business.
  • Women owners who plan to sell are more concerned than their men counterparts about:
    the buyer’s identity, personality, and background 72% vs. 39%
    the buyer’s plans for the business 79% vs. 52%
    plans for current employees 86% vs. 61%
  • Women business owners are nearly twice as likely as men business owners to intend to pass the business on to a daughter or daughters (37% vs. 19%).

Banking and Finance

  • Women business owners’ satisfaction with banking relationships has more than doubled since 1992 (35% vs. 82%).
  • More than two-thirds (67%) of women business owners choose financial products and services based on their relationship and experience with a lender.
  • Women business owners who obtained capital persevered, making an average of four attempts to obtain bank loans or lines of credit and 22 attempts to obtain equity capital.

Characteristics of Women Business Owners

  • Women business owners are prepared to face risk: most (66%) are willing to take above average or substantial risks for business investments.
  • Women and men business owners have different management styles. Women emphasize relationship building as well as fact gathering and are more likely to consult with experts, employees, and fellow business owners.
  • Women owners of firms with $1 million or more in revenue are more likely to belong to formal business organizations, associations or networks than other women business owners (81% vs. 61%).

Other statistics about women in business

  • In Australia, a female CEO earns two-thirds the salary of her male counterpart.
  • In 2010 only 2.4% of the U.S. Fortune 500 chief executives were female. In the FTSE 500 the statistics are even worse–only 1.8% of its companies are led by women.
  • Women’s access to boardroom seats is also troubling, particularly in the U.S. and U.K. In the FTSE 100, for example, 12.5% of directors are women, a tiny improvement on the 12.2% in 2009 and 11.7% in 2008.
  • In Norway about 44.2% of board members are women. This is a result of 2008 legislation requiring publicly listed companies to have boards composed of at least 40% women.
  • In business leadership in 2009, women held 49% of the jobs in the U.S. and 50% of all managerial positions.
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics, which revealed that as at May 2007, women’s average weekly earnings were just 83.6% of men’s average weekly earnings, constituting a gender pay gap of 16.4%.
  • In the U.S., 46% of business women represent the nation’s workforce but hold just over 6% of the highest-paying positions in the largest 500 companies, according to Catalyst, a nonprofit research and advisory group.
  • The Asian and Pacific region loses US$ 42-47 billion per year due to restrictions on women’s access to employment opportunities and US$16-30 billion a year as a result of gender gaps in education.

Other Resources

Australia

  • Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Agency surveys
  • Gender workplace statistics at a glance
  • Women in the workforce trend data 2011
  • Women in the workforce by industry 2011
  • Women in the workforce by occupation 2011
  • Reibey Institute

International

Tools

Kasia Gospos
Founder of Leaders in Heels. Passionate about using Leaders in Heels to empower and connect all women in business. Loves all 'sorts' of technology and on most days can be found happily typing away at her desk or looking up things on the web. Is a feminist at heart and loves to meet new people. Australia, Sydney
 
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