Pay gap, pay equality, pay parity, equal pay for equal work. It's fair to say that in 2019 the discourse around pay has reached fever pitch - and for good reason! The most recent data from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency or WGEA shows that Australian women are earning (on average) 14.1% less than their male counterparts, with data from Western Australia revealing a horrifying 23.1% gender wage gap for full-time workers. While the topic of salary has remained taboo for years, these worrying stats have opened up the conversation around pay. In fact, there's never been a more apt time to question whether or not you're getting paid the same as your peers.
So, gender aside, what's the average income in Australia by age and how do you stack up?
Fortunately for Aussies, the Australian Bureau of Statistics makes a habit of revealing salary and earnings data for you to peruse. The most recent of which (May, 2018) revealed the average weekly earnings of workers aged between 21 and 34 is $1,127.60. Those aged between 35 and 44 averaged a higher weekly salary of $1,503.70. The highest average weekly earnings of $1,544.20 belonged to the 45 to 54 age bracket.
As for which job roles pulled in the highest weekly earnings, so-called “managers” earned the biggest bucks with an average weekly salary of $2424.50. They also had the highest average age coming in at 45.9 years old.
Sales workers had the lowest average weekly earnings taking home $735.90. They had an average age of 33.7 years old.
Most workers (22%) fell under the category of “professionals”, a label which can include a wide range of job roles that require special training or education such as doctors, nurses, lawyers, teachers, architects and engineers. They had a weekly pay packet averaging $1,751.40 and an average age of 41.9.
The industry that accounted for the jobs with the highest average weekly salary was mining. Hospitality jobs had the lowest weekly average pay at $616.20 as well as the youngest staff with an average age of 30.1 years.
Geographically, the highest average salaries weren’t found in either Sydney or Melbourne but instead in the Australian Capital Territory where average wages were $1,517.20 per week. Tasmania and South Australia had the lowest average weekly salaries at $1,092.30 and $1,153.40 respectively.
How do you compare?
If alarm bells are ringing as you read through this data, and you feel like you're falling below the average wage for your age group and job role, it might be time to negotiate your salary. Easier said than done, right? Negotiating a pay rise can seem like one of the most confronting - and frankly quite terrifying - experiences of your professional life.
Never fear, Natalie Reynolds is here. The bestselling author of We Have a Deal and founder of the Make Your Ask Project, shared these fundamental learnings with Bumble, to help their Bumble Bizz community navigate the tricky realm of payrise negotiations.
1. Discover: Don't Go In Unprepared
2. Establish: Know When You'll Walk Away
3. Ask: Aim Realistically High
4. Lead: Find Solid Footing
5. Seal: Don't Immediately Give Up.