5. Education administrators
> Women’s earnings as pct. of men’s: 67.2%
> Women median weekly earnings: $1,052
> Men median weekly earnings: $1,566
> Number of workers: 704,000
Education administrators work at all levels of education, from preschool to postsecondary. In preschools and childcare centers, administrators help develop programs while coordinating and training teachers. Administrators at the postsecondary level can fill a broad range of roles, from directing admissions offices to serving as deans and provosts — who often direct tenure decisions and formulate academic policies. Nearly 65% of education administrators were female in 2012. However, pay for women was barely two-thirds that of men in these positions.
4. Personal financial advisors
> Women’s earnings as pct. of men’s: 66.3%
> Women median weekly earnings: $1,016
> Men median weekly earnings: $1,532
> Number of workers: 278,000
Financial advisors review and assess their clients’ assets and financial needs, and help them create a plan suited to their preferences and needs. Advisors typically require knowledge that extends beyond that of investment strategies. According to The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, many clients seek financial advice as a result of divorce and other emotionally-charged dilemmas. Last year, more than 180,000 men worked as personal financial advisors, compared with just over 95,000 women. According to the BLS, most personal financial advisors are self-employed.
3. Real estate brokers and sales agents
> Women’s earnings as pct. of men’s: 66.0%
> Women median weekly earnings: $680
> Men median weekly earnings: $1,031
> Number of workers: 328,000
Real estate sales agents, help customers buy, sell, or rent property. They work for brokers, who are sales agents licensed to operate their own business. All states require sales agents to be licenced, and additional licensing is required to become a broker. Real estate professionals are frequently self-employed and often work more than 40 hours a week. This is because they must spend a great deal of time meeting with clients and showing properties. As of 2012, women accounted for the majority of such workers, roughly 60%. Yet, the median income for women working full-time as brokers was just $680 a week, versus over $1,000 for men.
2. Retail salespersons
> Women’s earnings as pct. of men’s: 64.3%
> Women median weekly earnings: $436
> Men median weekly earnings: $678
> Number of workers: 1.84 million
Retail salespeople can work in a variety of different settings, from clothing stores to autoparts shops. The occupation is relatively low paying, with a median weekly pay of just $576 for working full-time as of 20112, compared median pay of $768 for all occupations. For women, the median 2012 pay was even lower, at just $436 for a full week. Pay at some jobs, such as sales positions at car dealerships, may also be dependent on commission. According to IWPR’s Hegewisch, women are more likely to work in non-commission paying retail jobs, such as clothing sales, while men are more likely to sell more expensive, commision-generating products, such as cars and electronics.
1. Insurance agents
> Women’s earnings as pct. of men’s: 62.5%
> Women median weekly earnings: $641
> Men median weekly earnings: $1,026
> Number of workers: 389,000
A typical female insurance agent made less than two thirds of what a man earned in a similar occupation. Selling insurance often involves interviewing clients, modifying policies to fit individual needs, calculating premiums, and conducting inspections of property in order to customize a coverage plan appropriately. The number of women working in insurance is roughly equal to the number of men — at 191,000 and 197,000, respectively. However, a typical woman working as an insurance agent earned $641 per week, compared to a typical man’s pay of over $1,000. Disparities in pay and opportunity in the insurance industry extend beyond the salesforce. According to a 2012 study by St. Joseph’s University, just 6% of top executive positions across the insurance industry were held by women, and only 12.6% of board seats belonged to women.