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The Gender Pay Gap In Customer Success Compensation: A Data Deep-Dive

There is a gender pay gap in customer success compensation. Here’s what the data shows.
Stefan Palios
December 15, 2022

Unfortunately, you probably had a gut feeling this was true. 

But now we have more data confirming it: there is a gender pay gap in customer success compensation.

Sharing data from the 2022-2023 Catalyst State of Customer Success Compensation report, we’re diving into what the pay gap looks like and what might be causing it. For context: the compensation report featured over 1,900 respondents, slight majority of which (56.6%) identified as female. The second largest group identified as male (41.3%), 0.2% as transgender, 0.8% as non-binary, and 1.1% chose not to disclose.

Here’s what the data tells us.

Women are paid less at almost every level

While women earn slightly more at the entry-level individual contributor role—noting the percentage is larger because the base is smaller—they earn less at every other level. The pay gap sizes out at the Director level and begins to shrink at the VP and C-suite level, possibly due to the increased public scrutiny placed on executive compensation, but a gap remains nonetheless. 

Unfortunately, there were not enough self-identified transgender or non-binary respondents to provide meaningful insight for these communities. However, we hope to be able to deliver this data in future reports.

Women receive lower raises… if they get them at all

Unfortunately, like in pay overall, there is a gender gap when it comes to who gets raises. While only 38.93% of respondents who asked for a raise are men, 43.7% of people who received raises are men. The reverse situation exists for women, making up 58.7% of people who asked for raises but only 54.1% of people who received them.

While the gender pay gap continues when it comes to raise amount, it’s not significant on a per-raise basis. Both men and women had roughly the same rate of receiving only a 1-5% raise. However, men were slightly more likely to have received either a 15-25% raise (14.5% of men compared to 13.8% of women) or a 25%+ raise (6.1% of men and 4.6% of women).

When it comes to switching jobs, both women and men tended to receive either no raise or a fairly significant raise.

Where the gender pay gap perpetuates is what constitutes “significant” for men versus women. For example, men are far more likely to receive a 40-50% raise or a 50%+ raise compared to women. Where women stand out is they are more likely to receive a 30-40% raise than men. However, the most common raise reported by women was either a 20-30% raise or no raise at all. On the other hand, men most commonly said they received a 10-20% raise or a 20-30% raise.

It might be tempting to say the occasional bigger raise for women fixes the gender pay gap. However, it’s more likely that any bigger raise percentage is on a smaller base, amounting to less in overall dollars than it might seem over the course of a career. Given the gender pay gap as it exists at senior levels, the data suggests that any large raises women get do not fully close the gap.

Men report more pay fairness than women

When we asked respondents about feelings of pay fairness, there was a slight uptick in the number of people agreeing that they felt fairly compensated overall (38.2% said yes in 2022 compared to 36.5% in 2021). That said, another—albeit smaller—gender gap exists: women report at higher rates that they did not feel fairly compensated (24.9% of men said they didn’t feel fairly compensated compared to 29.3% of women), something potentially justified by the data in this report indicating a gender pay gap at intermediate and senior levels.

More compensation data awaits

The trends here were just a small sample of the full data available in the 2022-2023 Catalyst State of Customer Success Compensation report.

The full report includes: 

  • Pay levels and compensation structures for all seniorities in customer success.
  • Insight into the gender pay gap in customer success compensation.
  • How individuals and employees are preparing for a possible recession.

Read the whole Report HERE.

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