Gender Inequality – The Facts

Home / Bidding Quarterly / Gender Inequality – The Facts

Recent surveys and reports confirm the impact of gender inequality across a range of business sectors. The data doesn’t lie.

Bids and Proposals Profession Statistics

Bid Solutions Salary Survey [1]

“Gender inequality across our profession cannot be disputed. It is evident in every role, industry, geography, and employment type.”

The latest Bid Solutions UK Bid and Proposal Salary Survey found:

  • The average gender pay gap is 21.5% across all roles within the profession (with men earning more than women).
  • There is a gender imbalance within the senior positions, i.e. ‘Head of’ roles are dominated by men. Junior roles such as Bid & Proposal Coordinator, Knowledgebase Manager are dominated by females.
  • There are huge discrepancies in salaries across all regions and roles. For instance, men now earn more than women across all regions (a shocking 41% more in Yorkshire).

In APMP’s 2018 – 2019 Ethics Survey [2]

44% of respondents believed there was an issue of “fewer promotions and lower pay based on gender”. Respondents also raised the following as major concerns facing the profession, demonstrating the need for equal working environments with good life balance:

  • Overwork and burnout (82% of respondents)
  • Emotional exhaustion (72% of respondents)
  • Verbal abuse or other intimidating behaviour (38% of respondents)
  • Demoralising treatment by a supervisor (38% of respondents)
  • Hostile work environment (36% of respondents)


Gender Pay Gap

According to the ONS (Office for National Statistics), the gender pay gap in the UK among all employees was 15.5% in 2020. Important to note – this is a measure across all jobs in the UK, not of the difference in pay between men and women for doing the same job. [3]

Financial Times’ 2020 Article: Gender pay gap: how women are short-changed in the UK [4]

“More than three out of four UK companies pay their male staff more than their female staff, and in nine out of 17 sectors in the economy, men earn 10% or more on average than women.”

Fawcett Society: Gender Pay Gap Reporting: A Comparative Analysis [5]

Currently only companies with more than 250 employees have to provide gender pay gap data. The Fawcett Society, together with the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College London, recommends the threshold is bought down to 50 employees in line with other countries.


Senior Positions

Fawcett Society – Sex and Power Report 2020 [6]

  • Women make up just over one in 20 CEOs (6%) of FTSE (Financial Times Stock Exchange) 100 companies. None of these CEOs are women of colour.
  • Women now make up 34% of MPs and 30% of Cabinet Ministers – but progress is too slow.
  • Media and arts: Women are a clear minority across almost all areas of the media and arts. Women make up only 21% of national newspaper editors – with just four women in the top jobs.


Women of Colour

The data also shows that women of colour are missing from across the range of public and private sectors:

  • There are no women of colour represented within the highest levels of the civil service
  • Since its formation in 2009, there has never been a person of colour appointed as a Supreme Court judge
  • There are no women of colour among the CEOs of the FTSE 100 (as noted above)
  • Women of colour make up just 1% of university vice-chancellors

Between Q3 2019 and Q3 2020, the number of BAME women workers had fallen by 17%, compared to 1% for white women.


Sexual Harassment

Report: Sexual Harassment in the Workplace, 2019

 TUC – The Trades Union Congress (TUC) UK [7]

TUC research has revealed the persistent and widespread scale of workplace sexual harassment. More than 50% of women and nearly 70% of LGBT workers are sexually harassed in the workplace. Half of those women who had experienced sexual harassment said that they had been subjected to unwelcome sexual jokes in the workplace more than six times in their lives.

32% of women have been subject to unwelcome jokes of a sexual nature and more than 10% of women reported experiencing unwanted sexual touching or attempts to kiss them in the workplace. 12.5% of LGBT women reported being seriously sexually assaulted or raped at work.

Nearly 20% of women reported that their harasser was either a direct manager or someone else with direct authority over them.



Covid-19: Empowering women in the recovery from the impact of the pandemic. Published Monday, 08 March, 2021 [8]

  • Overall, more women than men have been furloughed across the UK, and young women have been particularly impacted
  • 70% of women with caring responsibilities who requested furlough following school closures in 2021 had their request denied
  • 46% of mothers that have been made redundant during the pandemic cite lack of adequate childcare as the cause



This article was written by WIBAP.

Back to Foreword