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Top STEM graduate employers ranked on pay equity

Want to work for a STEM employer that values gender equity? Here are the top 10 and beyond by pay equity

STEM employers 3M, Rio Tinto, CSL, Google and PwC have all performed well on base pay equity in Australia’s first ranking of gender pay gaps at nearly 5,000 private sector organisations.

For the first time you can now see the difference between what men and women get paid at Australia’s biggest graduate employers. This type of transparency has been shown to work in closing the gender pay gap in other countries like the UK.

The Minister for Women, Senator Katy Gallagher, said the publication of employer gender pay gaps was a pivotal moment for gender equality in Australia.

“Transparency and accountability are critical for driving change,” Minister Gallagher said. “By shining a light on gender pay gaps at an employer level, we are arming individuals and organisations with the evidence they need to take meaningful action to accelerate closing the gender pay gap in Australian workplaces.”

STEM pay equity by company

Here at Careers with STEM we’ve crunched the numbers for 70 graduate employers who hire STEM graduates. So if pay equity matters to you when choosing an employer (and it should), you can see below both the best ranking organisations overall, and also by industry.

The collated data comes from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA), and it found while 30% of employers have a median gender pay gap between the target range of -5% and +5%, the majority (62%) of median employer gender pay gaps are over 5% and in favour of men.

It’s illegal in Australia to pay men and women a different salary for the same work, but many companies have a gender gap where men perform more senior, higher-paid roles. This has traditionally been a big problem in STEM fields as well. Only 27% of the STEM workforce are women, with women earning $27,012 less across STEM industries, according to the 2023 STEM Equity Monitor.

In a statement, the Commonwealth Bank said 54% of its local workforce were women and it had achieved gender pay equity on a “like-for-like” basis. While women represent around 44% of its leadership roles, they make up around 71% of customer service and operational roles in branches and call centres, which typically have lower relative rates of pay across industry.

The bank said it had goals to increase the proportion of women in both more senior roles and higher paying roles. “We are also working with government, industry, education providers and community groups to support more girls and women to enter the workforce with skills highly sought after in the Australian market to help diversify Australia’s talent pool.”

All the data

You can dig into all private companies with 100 employees or more over on the WGEA Data Explorer, including checking the policies they are adopting to close the pay gap, such as correcting like-for-like pay gaps and reviewing remuneration decision-making processes.

But for the TL;DR, here are the top 10 graduate employers by gender pay equity for base salary. A negative number means the balance is tipped in favour of women.

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
3M-4.21.8
Rio Tinto-2.313.5
Viva Energy1.611.4
CSL1.86.8
Google Australia3.714.9
PwC43.9
Quantium5.49.5
Woolworths5.75.7
Coles 65.6
Thoughtworks6.78.9

And these are the best performers by industry.

Accounting and professional services

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
PwC43.9
KPMG12.913.7
EY15.915.4
Deloitte16.716.7

Aviation

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Lockheed Martin Australia10.312.1
Qantas Airways39.337
Virgin Australia Airlines41.741.7

Banking, financial services and insurance

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Allianz1313.4
NAB16.418.8
Rabobank17.519.5
AMP19.917.8
Suncorp20.520.1
Bank of Queensland Group20.921.9
ANZ22.723.1
QBE Insurance2425.7
Westpac2728.5
IAG27.525.2
Commonwealth Bank of Australia29.829.9

Consulting

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Cognizant9.611.2
Accenture15.817.5
Capgemini16.818.4
CyberCX26.428.2

Engineering

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Thales8.68.8
Jacobs Australia1312.1
Acciona13.414.9
Arup16.718.5
John Holland1735.8
AECOM24.525.1
Stantec24.925.2
GHD2626.1
Aurecon Australasia26.326.3
Hatch35.935.4

Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG)

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Mars-5.2-10.5
Unilever-8.6-3.9

Health

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
CSL1.86.8
ResMed33.433.5

IT and telecommunications

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Google Australia3.714.9
Quantium5.49.5
Thoughtworks6.78.9
Wipro1014.2
Adobe10.212.5
Xero Australia11.211.4
MYOB Australia11.613.3
IBM Australia13.514.4
Optus13.514.7
Schneider Electric14.819.2
realestate.com.au14.912.8
Infosys15.716.7
Atlassian17.418.1
SEEK17.816.6
Telstra18.620.2
Saab Australia2120.8
Datacom22.226.1
DXC Technology25.626.6

Manufacturing

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
3M-4.21.8

Mining

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Rio Tinto-2.313.5
Newmont15.813.6
BHP Group18.920.3
Pilbara Minerals24.125.1
Glencore Coal40.941.4

Oil, gas energy and resources

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Viva Energy1.611.4
APA Group9.319.2
Powercor9.426.8
BP11.413.2
Orica13.913.9
Woodside Energy16.130.2
Ampol2122.5

Retail

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Woolworths5.75.7
Coles65.6

And here’s the full list of the major STEM graduate employers, ranked on gender pay equity in base pay (without bonuses).

EmployerMedian gender pay gap (base salary)Median gender pay gap
(total remuneration)
Unilever-8.6-3.9
Mars-5.2-10.5
3M-4.21.8
Rio Tinto-2.313.5
Viva Energy1.611.4
CSL1.86.8
Google Australia3.714.9
PwC43.9
Quantium5.49.5
Woolworths5.75.7
Coles65.6
Thoughtworks6.78.9
Thales8.68.8
APA Group9.319.2
Powercor9.426.8
Cognizant9.611.2
Wipro1014.2
Adobe10.212.5
Lockheed Martin Australia10.312.1
Xero Australia11.211.4
BP11.413.2
MYOB Australia11.613.3
KPMG12.913.7
Allianz1313.4
Jacobs Australia1312.1
Acciona13.414.9
IBM Australia13.514.4
Optus13.514.7
Orica13.913.9
Schneider Electric14.819.2
realestate.com.au14.912.8
Infosys15.716.7
Accenture15.817.5
Newmont15.813.6
EY15.915.4
Woodside Energy16.130.2
NAB16.418.8
Deloitte16.716.7
Arup16.718.5
Capgemini16.818.4
John Holland1735.8
Atlassian17.418.1
Rabobank17.519.5
SEEK17.816.6
Telstra18.620.2
BHP Group18.920.3
AMP19.917.8
Suncorp20.520.1
Bank of Queensland Group20.921.9
Saab Australia2120.8
Ampol2122.5
Datacom22.226.1
ANZ22.723.1
QBE Insurance2425.7
Pilbara Minerals24.125.1
AECOM24.525.1
Stantec24.925.2
DXC Technology25.626.6
GHD2626.1
Aurecon Australasia26.326.3
CyberCX26.428.2
Westpac2728.5
IAG27.525.2
Commonwealth Bank of Australia29.829.9
ResMed33.433.5
Hatch35.935.4
Qantas Airways39.337
Glencore Coal40.941.4
Virgin Australia Airlines41.741.7

Be inspired by all the women working in STEM at our profile hub.

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