Study Shows Pay Inequality Among Data Center Professionals | Knowledge of the data center

Closing the gender gap may well be the solution to the problem of skills shortages in data center operations.

It may not surprise you that the data center industry has more men contributing to it than women. The recent Data Center Knowledge Salary Survey confirmed what we know, but how do we know, with 85% of our respondents identifying as male and 10% as female, with 7% choosing not to respond within both directions.

Additionally, survey respondents had a huge median income gap in 2021, with male IT professionals earning a median annual salary of $105,000 compared to $85,000 for female IT professionals. feminine.

Lack of diversity and pay inequality between men and women make it increasingly difficult to staff an industry that is vital to sustaining societal progress, even though it often offers relative job security and competitive salaries.

This poses a big problem in the near future as the industry faces increased demand for data center services from businesses across all industries, especially in the United States and Canada. Data centers in the United States alone are expected to have an increased market share of 35% during the forecast growth period between 2021 and 2026.

“More needs to be done to close the gender pay gap, which directly reflects how women are valued in the labor market relative to men,” said Ruth Thomas, pay equity strategist at Payscale, in a statement. “Fortunately, employers are finally starting to take pay equity seriously. Plus, they think beyond gender and focus on any unexplainable pay gaps. But with the pressure of rising wage inflation, minimum wage increases and stiff competition for talent, we can expect more issues of wage compression and wage inequality to arise.

With the market growing faster in North America than in Europe, the Middle East and Asia, employers are well aware that increasing the talent pool will be key to staying competitive. To expand the data center technician talent pool and make it more accessible, the industry needs to demystify what it does while promoting the range of job opportunities within it.

Bill Kleyman, executive vice president of digital solutions at Switch, said the fact that the industry has more men who are older and likely to retire in 10 years is one of the biggest challenges facing data centers. data are currently facing.

“In our infrastructure space, that kind of complicates the challenge of bringing new and young people into our industry,” Kleyman said.

Efforts should be made to close the gender pay gap and increase diversity among data center technicians. Organizations and governments can each do their part to take concrete action on accessibility and pay equity: the former by promoting a work culture that sees diversity as a strength, the latter by adopting workplace laws. which require the disclosure of salary scales on job postings.

Here are some ways an organization can ensure increased diversity among data technicians and close the gender pay gap.

  • Addressing the Data Center Technician Pay Gap
    Employees are generally discouraged from discussing pay rates among themselves, with some organizations including clauses in their employee contracts expressly prohibiting this. Increasing transparency around pay scales helps organizations minimize unconscious bias and make better pay decisions that reduce pay gaps.
  • Look for inequalities in the work culture of data center technicians
    Inequalities are usually embedded within the framework of an institution for years. To make meaningful change, senior leaders must define not only diversity, but also what inclusion looks like.
  • Anonymize Data Center Technician Job Applications
    Making applications anonymous by removing identifying details like a name leads to the selection of more diverse applicants according to the Harvard Business Review. Anonymizing apps is also effective in reducing the impact of racial and other biases.
  • Encourage candidates for data center technician positions to use transferable skills
    Women apply for jobs they are most qualified for while men apply for jobs they feel confident about even if they don’t meet most of the qualifications. Job applications should use language that emphasizes applicable soft and transferable skills rather than direct experiences.
  • Creating Diversity in Data Centers with Greater Career Visibility
    Kleyman suggests that removing the secrecy behind data centers and plug-and-play recruiting efforts among women and minority populations would broaden people’s awareness of the field.
  • Provide flexibility in when and where the work is done
    Provide workers with the flexibility to adjust their schedules as they deem necessary. Women miss out on promotions or drop out of the workforce because of their babysitting responsibilities.

Ultimately, diversity and equal pay are good for data center technicians and the industry. Facilitating a diverse pool of applicants and employees as well as paying women the same as men only means a brighter future for the sector.

“We want more hot bodies and good human beings, especially people of diversity. [We need] more strong female leaders in this space so we don’t lose ideas, we don’t lose innovation,” Kleyman said.

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