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TV festival pay survey reveals gender and social imbalance

gender pay inequality survey

Women working in the television industry are more likely to be paid less than men, a survey conducted by Future Thinking for Edinburgh International Television Festival, has revealed.
You can view an infographic of the survey findings here.

The survey of 205 industry professionals found that women more likely to be on a salary under £35k (F=36%, M=27%), while more males report salaries of £75K+ (F=23%, M=31%). And males are significantly more likely to be in £150k plus bracket (10% vs. 2%)

The feeling of being underpaid is higher among females (F=62%, M=56%). And when males and females who feel underpaid were asked by how much, males said a figure of £22k would bring them in line with others in a similar role – which is approximately £10k more than females asked the same question.

How to Negotiate A Pay Rise session took place at the Edinburgh International Television Festival on Friday, 26th August at 2.30pm where the findings were discussed by a panel of experts who also offered their top tips to securing the best pay day.

Hannah Chambers, (Chambers Management), Emma Kenny (Psychologist), Ian Critchley, (independent talent consultant) and Samir Shah, (CEO and creative director of Juniper) were on the panel hosted by former director of entertainment and comedy, ITV, Elaine Bedell.

The survey also found that being promoted internally ranks top as the most influential factor for getting a pay rise (82%) – this was consistent for males and females. This was followed by ‘My line manager’s recommendation and support’ ranked second overall (total =81%).

Interestingly, ‘ability to network effectively with senior management’ was perceived to be more influential than ‘taking on work that is outside my remit but for the company’s benefit’ (79% vs. 71%)

Embarrassment about talking about pay was higher for women compared to men – with only 35% of women believing ‘there are loads of work opportunities available to people if they just ask’ (F=35%, M=41%); 40% claiming that ‘there are work opportunities open to me to help me improve my current situation’ (F=40%, M=51%); and 71% feeling embarrassed to talk about pay with their line manager (F=71%, M=60%).

Therefore, it is not surprising that males are more likely to have negotiated a pay rise in the last 3 years (F=49%, M=64%).

Fear of losing a job was the common factor in why women would not consider negotiating their pay. Additional factors include worrying that their job would be at risk and that the company would employ alternative personnel.
Younger people working in the industry are also significantly more likely to be embarrassed asking for a pay rise (18-30=74%, 31-45=66%, 46-60=51%)

Although the survey found dissatisfaction among salary and pay, the findings revealed that there is fairly high job satisfaction with two thirds (66%) giving a rating of 7-10. Females were more satisfied compared with males (70% vs. 60% resp.) and job satisfaction increases with age (18-30 =62%, 31-45=69%, 45-60=71%).

The survey also addressed issues of social mobility with a significant amount of young people getting their first break into the industry through work experience. A quarter got their first break into the industry by applying for a publicly advertised job (25%), or approaching a company directly for work experience (23%). Younger age groups are significantly more likely to have directly approached a company for work experience (18-30=32%, 31-45%=19%, 46-60=14%).

Among those who did complete work experience, just over a quarter supported themselves by working part time (26%), while around a fifth received financial help from their parents (22%) or using personal savings (20%).

The largest proportion of television industry employees grew up in London (27%), followed by the Midlands (18%), 81% are from England, 13% from Wales, Scotland or Ireland and only 7% grew up outside of the UK (compared with roughly 13% of the UK population, ONS 2010).

Over half attended a comprehensive school (58%) with 26% attending an Independent school and 11% a Grammar school. Males are significantly more likely to have attended a Comprehensive (F=52%, M=67%).

From those who received financial support from their parents during their work experience, 42% attended an independent school (Comprehensive schools=22%, selective grammar schools = 17%).

Those who attended comprehensive schools are most likely to have supported themselves through working a part time role (42%) while doing work experience in the media industry.

The findings show that those who attend independent school are most likely to gain their first break into the media industry through being offered work experience via a family friend or personal contact (33%).

The survey results also analysed how respondents broke into the media industry into two categories:
Official (applying for an advertised position, applied for an official work placement, head-hunted from a different industry) and
Unofficial (through directly approaching a company or being offered work experience through a family friend or personal contact).

The results show that those that attended independent schools are more likely to get their break unofficially (53%), compared to 41% from comprehensive schools and 27% from selected grammar schools.
For more information please contact Louise Plank on 07801 321 965

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