Tech jobs closing gender wage gap

Survey reveals Gen Z is fueling progress

As a design major, you may find a job as a web designer or UI/UX designer.


High salaries for women mainly come from progressive tech hub cities like San Francisco, experts say. GETTY IMAGES

Recent college graduates (or Generation Z) are making six figures in the technology industry and closing the sector’s long-held gender pay gap.

That’s according to new data provided by the career monitoring website Comparably, which found that the average salary for employees age 18 to 24 starts at $64,000 and can surpass $100,000, depending on the job.

In the majority of jobs, women in the age group earned more than men, according to the survey, which analyzed more than 2,800 salary records.

One set of qualities that sets the entry-level workers apart from previous generations is that they tend to care a lot about a corporation’s values and purposes, according to Comparably’s CEO Jason Nazar.

“They know that they’re coming into an all-time high job market. They know that these roles are extremely in demand, like engineering and product and design,” Nazar said.


Based on job descriptions provided by Comparably, most tech jobs require a professional background in computer science, business or design.

The two highest paid roles – senior developer and lead engineer – expect workers to have experience and leadership skills. Interpersonal skills and communication skills are stressed for certain business-related positions, according to the data.

Compared with other generations, Gen Zers have more practical experience early in their careers, Nazar said. A new graduate may already have up to four years of work experience through internships or their own projects.

To perform well in the workplace, it is important to combine high technical skills with emotional intelligence, which determines if an employee could work well with the team, Nazar added.


According to the study, employees in San Francisco or Silicon Valley are paid the highest across the nation, but they don’t necessarily make the best living, as expenses are so high.

Workers in these areas have to pay $3,609 a month to rent a one-bedroom apartment, compared with the national average of $1,430.

Comparably recommends Boston; Austin, Texas; and Seattle for a better salary-to-living cost ratio, but vetoes San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. A mobile developer in Austin makes approximately eight times their rent every month, but for one in Silicon Valley, the ratio is only 2.5, the study shows.


Women are being paid more on average than their male counterparts for eight out of the 15 jobs Comparably included in the survey.

“Companies are being more aggressive in terms of what they’re offering women, especially new grads,” Nazar said. “They want to make sure that they’re creating both pipelines of candidates and companies that have an equal amount of men and women on their teams.”’

However, not all women in tech see the same benefits.

Nazar warns that the high salaries for women mainly come from progressive tech hub cities such as San Francisco and New York. Nationwide, men still hold more positions than women in the tech industry.


The highest paid salaries also vary depending on race.

Employees from Asia and Pacific Islanders most often make the most, a trend that has continued for years, according Comparably. Still, other ethnicities were higher paid in some cases.

For senior developers, African American employees outpace every other ethnicity, while Latinos are the highest-paid web and visual designers as well as operations managers, according to Comparably.

Top tech jobs for grads

Ranked highest to lowest based on the average annual salary.

1. Senior developer $105,957

2. Lead engineer $103,237

3. Mobile developer $92,654

4. Data scientist $88,813

5. Product manager $87,947

6. DevOps engineer $86,094

7. UI/UX designer $71,691

8. Business development manager $68,588

9. Marketing manager $67,687

10. Business analyst $67,364

11. QA analyst $66,358

12. Financial analyst $65,687

13. Operations manager $64,608

14. Web/Visual designer $64,478

15. Sales manager $64,412


Some jobs, such as sales manager and business development manager, are heavily dependent on commissions and bonuses, which are not factored into base salary. Ratings were derived from the average salary records of 2,848 employees in tech jobs across the country. All education levels, genders, and ethnicities were included.

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