Go to top of page

Chapter 8: Remuneration by gender

This section outlines key remuneration findings by gender. Average Base Salary is used to compare remuneration between males and females and to calculate the gender pay gap, based on the standard approach endorsed by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency.

Table 8.1 shows the average Base Salary by gender. In 2017, the average Base Salary for males was $94,428, while the average Base Salary for females was $86,529. This represents an 8.4% gender pay gap across the APS, down from 8.6% in 2016.

Table 8.1: Average Base Salary by gender, 2017
Gender N Average base salary % Difference
Male 57,948 $94,428  
Female 81,359 $86,529 8.4%

Figure 8.1 shows the distribution of all employees by pay quartile and gender. In 2017, the majority of employees in the two lowest pay quartiles (Q1-Q2) were female, at 64–65%, above their representation within the APS of 59%. By contrast, there was little difference between the two genders in the highest pay quartile (Q4). Females accounted for 49% of employees in Q4. 

Figure 8.1: Employees by pay quartile and gender, 2017

Figure 8.2 and Table 8.2 show that between 2013 and 2017, the gap between male and female average Base Salaries has fallen from 9.6% to 8.4%.

Figure 8.2: Average gender pay gap trends, 2013–2017

Table 8.2: Average Base Salary by gender, 2013–2017
Gender 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Male 91,680 92,042 91,744 92,036 94,428
Female 82,919 83,712 83,386 84,104 86,529

Remuneration by gender and classification

On a level-by-level basis, there were only small differences between male and female Base Salaries at each classification level (see Appendix A3: Table 14). The largest gap between male and female median base salaries was 2% at the SES 1 level, with females receiving 98.0% of median male salaries.

The 8.4% gap across the APS is driven by the number of male and female staff at each classification level. Although the majority of APS staff (59%) are female, most of these staff are clustered at the APS 6 level and below. While at-level gaps are largest at the SES classifications (Figure 8.3), the impact of the SES cohort on the overall pay gap is relatively minor, even when bonuses are taken into account. This is due to the smaller volume of employees at the SES classifications compared with APS classifications. The large representation of women in APS levels has a much larger impact on the gender pay gap.

Figure 8.3: Median Base Salary by gender and classification, 2017