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New Canadian survey reveals barriers for women at work

Barriers for women at work in Canada

Although Canadian companies continue to make progress toward gender equality in the workplace, there are still several areas for improvement, Capterra’s latest study reveals. Whether it’s during the recruitment process or when asking for promotions, Canadian women are still facing barriers on the path to equal opportunity in the workplace. Capterra’s survey of almost 1,000 working adults reveals how Canadian businesses are actively promoting gender equality at work and where progress still needs to occur.

Salary equity

Satisfaction surrounding salary certainly differs between genders. Just 37% of the surveyed Canadian women felt satisfied with their current salary. Among the women who who reported being unsatisfied with their remuneration, 43% feel that they are underpaid for the work they do.

Furthermore, 42% reported feeling they are not paid enough to make a good living, and 21% feel their colleagues in the same role are being paid more. Additionally, 16% feel that their work is not being properly valued.

Asking for promotions

A significant finding in the research is that 42% of the Canadian women surveyed have never asked for nor received a promotion. This disparity could be attributed to a difference in comfort levels when asking for promotions.

For example, only 27% of women feel either “mostly’ or “totally” comfortable asking for promotions. Gender stereotypes are likely a significant factor in the disparity in promotions.

Furthermore, nearly half (48%) of women respondents reported that their company currently offers no programs or activities that promote gender equality at work. This could influence women’s sentiments in the workplace and how comfortable they feel asking for promotions or benefits.

Women in leadership

Of Capterra’s survey-takers, 10% responded that there are no women in leadership positions at their company, and 46% of respondents stated that there are only “a few” women in senior positions at their company. While gender-inclusive workplaces are an idea for the future, there is still a ways to go.

Tessa Anaya, Analyst at Capterra, reports: “It’s clear that employees are having different workplace experiences based on their gender. Even subtle discrimination can create inequality between men’s and women’s career advancement, such as a lack of empowerment that leads to a lack of promotions for female employees and thus, unequal representation in leadership roles. It’s a slippery slope.”

Anaya continues, “Without adequate gender equality programs or salary equity assurances in place, women may be being overlooked when it comes to workplace opportunities. On the bright side, Canadian organizations are moving in the right direction, but more progress needs to be made in order to continue fighting gender inequality in the workplace.”

About Capterra

Capterra helps organizations around the world find the right software for their needs. Founded in 1999, Capterra’s global product footprint, verified user reviews backbone, independent research, and tailored comparison tools, provide more than five million in-market buyers with a confidence-building discovery experience. For more information, visit

The findings above are an overview of research findings provided by Capterra. Please note that When Women Inspire recognizes there are more genders than only women and men. When Women Inspire also knows gender and sex are not synonyms. 

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