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Report: Women still aren’t asking for raises, even though the pandemic hit them hard

A Glassdoor report shows that people just aren’t asking for raises or bonuses like they did pre-pandemic, and women are even less likely to speak up.

Report: Women still aren’t asking for raises, even though the pandemic hit them hard
[Photo: Charles Deluvio/Unsplash]

Asking for a raise is hard enough even in the best of times. But when you’re afraid you’ll lose your job, it’s even harder. Since the pandemic had a disproportionate impact on women and record numbers actually lost jobs over the past year, it’s not surprising that a new survey found that they’re less likely to ask for more money.

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Glassdoor partnered with the Harris Poll to ask nearly 1,500 employed U.S. adults about pay raises, bonuses, and/or cost-of-living increases in the next 12 months. Sixty-five percent said they didn’t ask for a raise during the pandemic but of those, nearly three-quarters (73%) of women didn’t ask for a raise as compared to just 58% of men. That’s despite the fact that a quarter of U.S. workers took a pay cut over the last year.

That said, more than half (54%) are going to take a deep breath and make the pitch to get more money this year.

Among some of the other findings:

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  • Thirty-one percent of employees accepted their salary without negotiating, down from 40% in March 2019.
  • Women are 19% less likely to ask for more money than men.
  • Fewer U.S. employees successfully negotiated their salary than they did two years ago.
  • The number of those who successfully negotiated (14% of men and 12% of women) is down from March 2019 when 18% of men and 16% of women got more money.

The number of women either not asking or not getting raises further skews the wage gap between male and female workers, which seemed to be trending in the right direction pre-COVID-19. Right now, the average national pay-disparity numbers indicated that it will take American female workers until March 24 this year to earn the same amount of money that men did performing the same work over the course of 2020. Some estimates suggest that it will take 40 years to close the gender pay gap.

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About the author

Lydia Dishman is a staff editor for Fast Company's Work Life section. She has written for CBS Moneywatch, Fortune, The Guardian, Popular Science, and the New York Times, among others.

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