Special Report

20 Jobs That Have Become Dominated by Women

Source: DragonImages / iStock

15. Technical writers
> 16 yr. change in share of women: 6.8 ppt.
> 2016 female workers: 27,568 (58.2% of total)
> 2000 female workers: 26,560 (51.4% of total)
> Median earnings: $71,388

Coinciding with rising college attainment among American women, science, engineering and other technical fields continue to attract growing numbers of female applicants and workers. Technical writers write technical materials such as equipment manuals, appendices, or operating and maintenance instructions. Female employment in most jobs on this list rose to a majority share since 2000. Somewhat of an exception, women already comprised most jobs in the field even in 2000, when the 26,560 women employed in the job made up 51.4% of all such professionals. By 2016, the share of women among technical writers rose to a commanding 58.2% majority.

Source: yacobchuk / iStock

14. Lodging managers
> 16 yr. change in share of women: 6.9 ppt.
> 2016 female workers: 56,675 (52.7% of total)
> 2000 female workers: 42,820 (45.8% of total)
> Median earnings: $45,875

The number of women working as lodging managers — or hotel, motel, and bed and breakfast managers — increased by nearly 14,000 over the last 16 years. Meanwhile, the number of men working in the profession remained effectively unchanged at 50,893. The increasing ranks of female workers turned the once male-dominated occupation into a female dominated one as the share of women in the occupation rose from 45.8% to 52.7% over the same period.

At $41,285, the median annual wage for women working in as lodging managers is only slightly higher than the $40,675 median wage for women across all occupations.

Source: JackF / iStock

13. Compliance officers
> 16 yr. change in share of women: 7.5 ppt.
> 2016 female workers: 119,140 (52.6% of total)
> 2000 female workers: 36,500 (45.1% of total)
> Median earnings: $69,262

Compliance officers are responsible for ensuring their organizations are conforming to laws and regulations in their business operations. As recently as 2000, the majority of compliance officers were male. However, over the 16 years since, the number of women working in the occupation more than tripled, and now, about 53% of compliance officers are female. Over the same period, the gender pay gap in the occupation has also improved considerably. Today, the median annual income among female compliance officers is $64,588, or 88% of the median income among their male counterparts. In 2000, women earned 79.4% of what men in the occupation earned. Across all occupations, women earn just 80% of what men earn, up from 73% in 2000.

Source: Gilitukha / iStock

12. Nonfarm animal caretakers
> 16 yr. change in share of women: 7.7 ppt.
> 2016 female workers: 86,341 (71.4% of total)
> 2000 female workers: 32,130 (63.7% of total)
> Median earnings: $25,210

Nonfarm animal caretakers include those who exercise, groom, and feed animals in a range of different settings, from zoos and aquariums to kennels and animal shelters. Since 2000, the number of women working as animal caretakers has more than doubled, and today, 71.4% of all workers in the occupation are female, a larger share than the majority of jobs on this list.

While female employment has strengthened far faster among nonfarm animal caretakers than in most jobs, the gender pay gap has worsened slightly. Women in the occupation earn just 78.7% of what their male counterparts earn, down from an 82.4% wage gap in 2000. Across all occupations, the gender pay gap improved from 72.7% to 80.2% over the same period.

Source: Agababjan / iStock

11. Fabric and apparel patternmakers
> 16 yr. change in share of women: 7.9 ppt.
> 2016 female workers: 1,746 (82.6% of total)
> 2000 female workers: 2,780 (74.7% of total)
> Median earnings: $61,630

Few jobs in the United States — and none on this list — are as female dominated as fabric and apparel patternmakers. Currently, 82.6% of workers in the occupation are female, up from 74.7% in 2000. The 7.9 percentage point increase was also the 11th largest such increase in any job.

In a break from the national trend of increasing gender wage equality, women working as fabric and apparel patternmakers now make less than their male counterparts. A decade ago, wages for women in the occupation were higher than that of men. Today, the typical female worker earns $61,097 a year compared to the $66,227 median annual wage men earn.

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