Revealed:  Gender and Race Pay Gaps are Widening at an Alarming Rate

Women and people from racial minorities expect a significantly lower salary compared to their counterparts.
Revealed: Gender and Race Pay Gaps are Widening at an Alarming Rate

The last few years have brought us soaring inflation, major talent shortages, and a crazy competitive job market. So it’s no surprise that the minimum salary expectations from candidates on Otta have grown by a whopping 25% year-on-year (Dec 2022 vs Dec 2021 in the UK).

But that growth in salary expectations isn’t equal across all job seekers. Women and minorities expect lower salaries than white men, perpetuating lower salaries. It’s a problem called the ’ask gap’.

This year, these ‘ask gaps’ are getting even worse. Let’s dive into what’s happening:

There have always been gender and race pay gaps. Those gaps aren’t shrinking.

At the end of 2021, salary expectations among women were 15% less than men. Meanwhile, people from minority racial backgrounds were asking for 11% less than their white counterparts.

Fast forward to 12 months later, these gaps have either stayed the same or widened drastically. 

Gender: Our data shows that women still expect to earn around 15% less than their male counterparts.

Gender 2

Race: Those from minority racial backgrounds are now expecting 20% less than their white counterparts.


And when we look at Gender and Race together, the picture is even bleaker.

For candidates who identify as women and with minority racial backgrounds, the disparity is even more apparent. They’re now looking for 40% less than their white male counterparts. In December 2021, the gap was 26%.

Race and Gender-2


How do we close these gaps? With complete transparency.

The reality is that everyone is flying blind when it comes to salary expectations. But there are some groups (especially white men) who tend to ask for more and will negotiate harder to get it. 

Unfortunately, these pay gaps continue to be reinforced by a severe lack of transparency on the part of employers and recruiters. Yet, as one study shows, when women know the pay range on offer, they’ll ask for fair pay. 

By making things more transparent, you empower everyone to ask for the right salary.

Read more about the benefits of salary transparency.

At Otta, we’re pushing to change salary expectations once and for all.

We believe that far too many skilled and qualified candidates are falling through the cracks caused by gender and racial pay gaps. But it doesn’t have to be like this. 

By simply sharing the salary range on your job postings, you can level the playing field. Whether it’s a quick bullet point in a job description or a completed salary range field on Otta, there’s no reason to keep it shrouded in secrecy anymore. 

When you’re upfront and honest about what you’re willing to pay, you can help realign expectations, attract the best candidates, and build trust in your employer brand. Win, win, win.

Supercharge Your Hiring with Otta

Are you up for driving your internal hiring processes even further to engage the very best talent? If so, we'd love to share how brands like Beam, Electric Car Scheme and other fast-growing companies have addressed pay and salary transparency as a key pillar of their D&I strategy.