Female Coding Power: 15 Statistics About Women in Tech
Updated · May 20, 2023
The United States is home to 6.3 million more women than men.
Yet, there are 9.8 million more women than men actively working.
That’s a substantial difference, but it’s mild compared to the reality in the tech industry.
Our detailed analysis of the latest women in tech statistics will show you the amazing progress women have made in the field—and how much ground we have left to cover on our quest for equality.
Women in STEM Statistics (Editor’s Choice):
- In the tech industry, 75% of men believe their company offers equal pay—only 42% of women agree with that assessment.
- Women in tech were nearly twice as likely to lose their job during the COVID pandemic.
- Only 38% of women with a computer science degree still work in the field.
- Men in tech get a 60% higher offer than women for the same position.
- Women occupy only 25% of the technical positions in large tech firms.
- 78% of women in tech jobs believe they need to work harder than men to prove their worth.
- Half of the women leave their jobs in the tech industry by the time they’re 35.
- Only one in four tech startups has a female founder.
- Women-led startups received just 2.3% of the venture capital in 2020.
The Tech Uphill Battles
Women’s fight for equality has been an uphill battle throughout history.
In the tech industry, it still very much is.
With just about a quarter of workers in technical positions female, the percentage of women in tech is higher than ever.
Let’s take a look at how working women are fairing now that COVID-19 is behind us.
1. More than two million women dropped out of the workforce because of the pandemic.
Due to COVID-19, the percentage of women in the workforce has gone down significantly, reversing decades of progress.
Of course, the pandemic affected both men and women, but not equally. Roughly 1.8 million men left the workforce compared to 2.3 million women.
Be it because they were let go or because the circumstances made them quit, the fact is that female participation in labor dropped down to 57% in 2021—the lowest it’s been since 1988.
2. Females in tech were nearly twice as likely to lose their job during the pandemic.
When COVID-19 made its presence felt, more women took on extra responsibilities than men, both at work (44% vs. 36%) and at home (33% vs. 19%).
Approximately 14% of women lost their jobs or were furloughed because of the pandemic. Only 8% of men in tech had to go through the same experience.
3. Non-White TMT women are less optimistic about their career prospects post-pandemic.
A study found that 59% of women of color in tech think they have fewer chances for growth within their company than they did before. For comparison, 48% of White women share the same perspective.
Similarly, 52% of non-White women in Technology, Media, and Telecommunications (TMT) believe their work/life balance is poor, yet only 43% of other women feel the same.
Interesting fact: In the US, Black women earn an average of 6.8% less than Black men. White women, on the other hand, earn 16.9% less than White men. However, due to the racial wage gap, a Black woman ends up earning 15% less than a White woman anyway.
4. According to STEM workforce statistics, nearly a third of all employees at large tech companies are women.
As of 2022, women accounted for 32.9% of the workforce at large tech companies. This is a marked improvement from 2019, when 30.8% of employees were women, but we still have a long way to go before we reach gender equality in the tech industry.
Case in point, statistics show that women in tech occupy merely a quarter of all technical positions.
That is, only 25% of all tech-specific positions go to women. The rest of the female employees occupy positions that, while respectable and valuable, do not require tech expertise.
Diversity in Tech Statistics
Tech has always been a male-dominated industry.
Even today, it’s one of the most homogenous fields in terms of gender diversity.
Think of the biggest names in tech—Bill Gates, Elon Musk, or Steve Jobs—and you’ll see that most are White and male.
The reasons for that are diverse and complex, but the numbers are telling.
5. 75% of men believe their company offers equal pay.
Ironically enough, only 42% of women believe so, too.
Now, do men and women actually make the same?
Not really. About a third of both men and women (33% and 38%, respectively) report being unsatisfied with their current salaries. However, women who aren’t satisfied make an average of $69,543, whereas unsatisfied men make $81,820.
So, as you see, the gender gap in technology spans beyond the number of employees and into their financial expectations within the industry—and out of it, too.
In the US, 23.4% of all male workers make more than $100,000 a year. In comparison, just 11.1% of all female workers earn that much.
In short, men expect higher pay—and often receive it.
While it’s true that women are less likely to ask for a raise or a promotion than men (67% vs. 52%), it doesn’t necessarily follow that all women need to do to get more money is “just ask”.
6. 78% of women in tech believe they need to work harder than men to prove their worth.
Even in 2023, being a woman in the tech industry isn’t easy.
Most female tech companies employees feel they need to work harder than their male coworkers to prove their worth. In fact, only 22% don’t feel that way.
Moreover, due to the relative underrepresentation of women in the industry, 72% of them have worked in environments where “bro culture” prevails. That is male-dominated workplaces where sexual harassment isn’t a rare occurrence.
Tellingly, 41% of men feel the same way, suggesting that both genders prefer a more diverse workplace.
7. Only 43% of smaller companies have programs to increase diversity.
Male vs. female employment statistics can be readily found if one’s interested in who works at the world’s leading companies. For instance, 34% of Apple’s employees are female.
Smaller businesses, however, don’t usually share that information. But estimates suggest that 43% of SMBs have outlined strategies to increase diversity.
Women in STEM Statistics: The Entrepreneurship Trials
While we’re on the topic of small businesses and diversity, let’s see how female entrepreneurs are doing.
How likely is a startup to succeed if it has a female founder?
Draw your conclusions from the stats below.
8. Only one in four tech startups is founded by a female.
Across all industries, 28% of startups had at least one female founder in 2020—a notable improvement from 2017, when 22% had a female founder.
The percentage of women in technology startups has gone up, too. About 26% of the startups in the field had at least one female founder.
However, women in leadership positions are still far fewer than men. Even in firms with a female founder, 54% of CEOs are men. In male-founded startups, that percentage rises to an astounding 98%.
All in all, only 14% of startups have a woman as a CEO.
9. Just 2.3% of venture capital went to women-led startups in 2020.
Getting venture capital for a startup is difficult, to begin with—only 0.05% of US startups manage it—but it seems to be extra challenging for women in IT.
It’s not just that it’s rarer that investors back you up. It’s that you’re likely to get less money even when they do.
For instance, startups founded by women closed 6% of all VC deals in 2020 yet only gathered 2.3% of all venture capital. Not only is this ridiculously low, but it’s also worse than in 2019 (2.8%).
Companies co-founded by a woman, and a man fared better—they attracted roughly 9% of capital and closed 13% of all VC deals.
Interesting fact: Some institutions, like National Funding, recognize the gender disparity in this area and offer dedicated small business loans for female entrepreneurs.
10. Black women raised 0.00006% of all tech-related VC in the past decade.
(Source: Compare Camp)
Black women in tech are one of the least numerous groups in the industry.
About 17% of all tech workers in the US are White women. Asian (5%), Black (3%), and Hispanic (1%) women make up the rest of the female workforce in the national tech industry, amounting to a total of 25%.
Although Black female entrepreneurs are on the rise, they still struggle in the tech industry. So far, they’ve founded 221 startups and raised an average of $42,000 for their businesses.
Interesting fact: Only one of the 614 billionaires in the US is a Black woman: Oprah Winfrey.
11. Women occupy 23% of tech roles at Microsoft.
The gender ratio in tech companies, despite continuously improving, is still a long way off from parity.
Remember how Apple’s workforce is 34% female?
Well, women only occupy 24% of all the tech roles at the trillion-dollar company.
Microsoft doesn’t fare any better—29% of its workforce is female, but women only perform 23% of the available tech-related jobs.
Furthermore, women are also hard-pressed to get leadership positions at tech companies. For instance, 45% of Amazon’s employees are female, but only 29% of leadership roles go to a woman.
Interesting fact: Tech isn’t the only field where women struggle to get equal opportunities. The average female participation ratio in the US workforce as a whole is 47%, yet only 27% of Congress members are women.
Students and Famous Women in STEM
Women’s presence in STEM has certainly grown over the last few decades.
However, most engineering and computer science courses still see an overwhelming majority of male students.
12. A quarter of STEM graduates are female.
(Source: STEM Women)
Nowadays, more women have access to higher education.
By 2019, 43% of Millennial women had tossed a graduate cap at least once. For comparison, only 11% of women who were born between 1928 and 1945 earned a degree.
Furthermore, women are slowly gaining ground in the science and technology field. For instance, statistics about women in engineering suggest roughly 25,000 British women graduate in core STEM subjects every year, representing 26% of the entire cohort.
If we break it down by subject, we get that around 40% of graduates in physical and mathematical sciences are female. The same is true for only 16% of engineering graduates.
This can be partially explained by the general predisposition of women, who dominate social sciences and humanities.
13. Women represent 27% of STEM workers in the US.
(Source: United States Census Bureau)
That’s a tremendous improvement compared to 1970 when just 8% of STEM workers were female. Yet, it will take a couple more decades at this rate until the gender discrepancy disappears.
That said, if we look at what percentage of STEM workers are female in certain areas of science, things look a lot better.
Women made a huge leap in the field of social science, where they now make up 64% of all workers (up from 19% in 1970). They also account for 47% of mathematicians, 45% of life and physical sciences workers, and 15% of engineers in the country.
Notice how the percentages in this stat are quite similar to those in the previous one?
14. Only 38% of women with a computer science degree still work in the field.
Many top females in tech had to obtain a STEM degree before thriving in the workplace. But not every woman who graduates with such a degree goes on to work in the field—or, at least, not for long.
Take Melinda Gates, for instance. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in computer science and economics at Duke University. She led a successful career at Microsoft for years before assuming the leading role at the Gates Foundation.
At the end of the day, just over a third (38%) of women with a CS degree work in the industry. For comparison, 53% of men do.
Fun fact: Not all women who have succeeded in the tech industry have a STEM degree. One of the most famous women in technology in 2022, Susan Wojcicki, studied history, literature, economy, and business. Nowadays, she’s YouTube’s CEO and #34 on the list of “America’s Self-Made Women 2021.”
15. A fifth of those who earn a Bachelor’s degree in computer science are women.
The women who focus their undergraduate efforts on CS don’t represent a large percentage of the total graduates (19%). However, they account for a larger share at the postgraduate level—31% of those with a master’s degree in computer science are women.
This would suggest that women’s commitment increases once they’ve gotten into the field.
Even in 2023, women in STEM often find that academic achievements aren’t enough to secure their success in the industry. Of course, that’s true throughout, as academia and real life don’t always overlap as much as you’d like.
Interesting fact: 50% of women have experienced gender discrimination in the workplace. That percentage rises among women who have postgraduate education (62%), work with computers (74%), or are employed in a male-dominated company (78%).
After reading through so many women in tech statistics, you’ve probably started wondering why such an imbalance exists.
The reasons are complex and diverse, as the stats themselves.
However, raising awareness helps understand the dynamics a bit better, and that's all our article can hope for.
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