About the Data Explorer

This Data Explorer has been created using data from non-public sector organisations with 100 or more employees that reported to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) during at least one reporting period from 2013-14 to 2016-17.

The dataset covers over 4 million employees across Australia, which accounts for approximately 40% of the total labour force (2016-17).

How is the Data Explorer structured?

The home page of the Data Explorer provides you with three options for exploring the data – gender equality overview, industry view and the comparison view.

1. The gender equality overview section allows you to see how each industry is performing on a scatterplot that shows pay equity (on the Y axis) and gender composition (on the X axis).

2. The industries section provides a detailed look at a range of gender equality indicators across Australian industries overall, or you can select a particular industry segment of interest. This section also allows you to visualise change over time where applicable.

3. The comparison section enables you to compare the performance of two selected industry segments side-by-side.

Overview section

The first thing that you will see in this section is a bubble graph showing a comparison between workforce composition and gender pay gaps by industry.

How does the bubble graph work?

The size of each industry bubble is determined by the number of employees in that ANZSIC industry classification (see industry definitions below). You can hover over a bubble to see the details of that industry or click on it to 'drill down' into that industry's segments. You can click and drag to create a 'zoom zone' that enables you to see closely grouped industries more clearly.

Can I see actual figures?

To the left of the bubble graph you will see bar charts that provide the percentage figures for your selected industry. If you select “see more details” under the bar charts you will be redirected to the summary page for the industry segment of interest.

Can I see data from previous years?

Yes. You can move between years using the slider at the bottom of the bubble graph.

Can I filter by the number of employees?

Yes. There is an organisation size filter to the right of the bubble graph

How are industries defined?

The Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC) 2006 is a standard system for classifying industries based on primary business activity, and is based on a four-level hierarchical structure. It is used in the Data Explorer to enable users to 'drill down' into industries. The hierarchy begins with 19 broad industry classifications, followed by three further classification levels: subdivision, group and class.

ANZSIC has been used to categorise organisations reporting to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency. For instance, an organisation whose main activity is health insurance would be classified under the following classification:

  • Financial services (Industry division F)

  • Insurance and superannuation funds (Industry sub-division 63)

  • Health and general insurance (Industry group 632)

  • Health insurance (Industry class 6321)

Visit the Australian Bureau of Statistics website for more information on ANZSIC.

Industries section

This section is made up of nine tabs: Summary, Workforce composition, Employee movements, Gender pay gaps, Employer action on pay equity, Gender equality strategy & consultation, Flexible working, Support for carers & paid parental leave, and Sex-based harassment & domestic violence.

Can I filter the data?

Yes. You can filter by organisation size as well as industry, using the bar to the right of the graphs.

What do 'View Change' and 'View Year' mean?

'View Year' displays figures for each of the reporting periods. The yellow lines represent the figures for the chosen industry segment, and the dark grey lines represent the 'all industries' figures.

'View Change' displays the year-on-year differences in the data, expressed as a percentage point change (p.p.). The yellow bars in these graphs show the chosen industry segment figures only.

How are 'policy' and 'strategy' defined?

Policies are the guidelines, rules and procedures developed by an organisation to govern its actions (often in recurring situations). They define the limits (do's and don'ts) within which decision must be made.

A strategy is a plan of action designed to achieve one or more of the organisation's objectives. Strategy fills the gap between “where we are” and “where we want to be”, that is, “how are we going to get there”?

The figures in this section refer to policies and strategies that are standalone, AND/OR contained within another policy/strategy.

NOTE: The compliance report questionnaire provides employers the option to specify why they do not have a particular policy or strategy in place. Prior to 2016-17, two of the options were 'No, insufficient human resources staff' and 'No, don't have expertise'. In 2016-17 these options were combined and the new option created - 'Insufficient resources/expertise', therefore there is no data showing for previous years.

Useful tools and case studies

You will also find links to tools and case studies on each industry tab.


This tab shows overview statistics for the chosen industry – number of employees, number of organisations, proportion of females (and inversely, males), and stacked bar charts that present the breakdowns of employee type and organisation size.

TIP - to show or hide categories in the stacked bar charts click on the labels below the graphs

Workforce composition

This tab presents information collected in the compliance report workplace profile related to:

  • employee occupational categories and employment status
  • proportion of organisations that operate as a partnership structure
  • the gender composition of Equity Partners broken down by occupational category

The stacked bar charts show the split between women (yellow) and men (grey). The markers show the equivalent 'all industries' proportions.


The occupational categories for managers and non-managers are detailed in the 2017 reporting reference guide on pages 21 to 25. The employment status definitions can be found on page 20. Information about governing bodies is on pages 44 to 46, and partnership details are on pages 45 and 46.

Employee movements

This tab shows the number of appointments, promotions and resignations within reporting organisations. Please note that the number of appointments includes the number of promotions and resignations refer to employees who have given up their employment voluntarily. Further details can be found in the 2017 reporting reference guide on pages 41 and 42.

The stacked bar charts that present appointments, promotions and resignations by role show the split between women (yellow) and men (grey). The markers show the equivalent 'all industries' proportions.

The stacked bar charts that present promotions and resignations by employment type show the percentage of full-time, part-time and casual employees.

TIP - to show or hide data for promotions and resignations by employment type click on the labels below the graphs

Gender pay gaps

This tab shows the gender pay gap for all employees with splits available for full-time, part-time and casual employees. A separate gender pay gap is shown for each manager and non-manager occupational category.

How are gender pay gaps displayed?

The gender pay gap is expressed as a percentage of men's earnings. Where men earn more than women, the yellow line will be above 0%, and the gender pay gap will be a positive value. Where women earn more than men, the yellow line will be below 0% and the gender pay gap will be a negative value.

How are gender pay gaps calculated?

When organisations report to us, they provide a "snap-shot in time" of their workforce. The salary data is both annualised and converted to full-time equivalent. This means that if a person was employed for only part of the year or less than full-time, their salary data is presented as if they had worked full-time for the full year. Employers provide data on base salaries (before tax) and on total remuneration (which includes base salary plus other remuneration components such as superannuation, bonus/performance pay, discretionary pay, overtime and other allowances).

The weighted average of the salaries of all men in the relevant category is calculated. The weighted average of all women in the relevant category is calculated. The result for women (which is usually lower than for men) is subtracted from the result for men, and expressed as a percentage of the result for men: the gender pay gap.

Employer action on pay equity

This tab allows users to explore:

  • the percentage of employers that have a formal policy and/or formal strategy and whether they include specific gender pay equity objectives
  • whether employers have conducted a remuneration gap analysis
  • if applicable, reasons why they have not conducted a remuneration gap analysis
  • if applicable, actions employers took after conducting a remuneration gap analysis.

What is a pay gap analysis?

A pay gap analysis is a review of the data comparing female and male salaries to identify if and where differences may occur. This may include analysing both the base salary and total remuneration of your workforce to identify like-for-like, level-by-level and organisation-wide gender pay gaps, and their causes.

Gender equality strategy & consultation

This tab allows users to explore the percentage of organisations that have formal policies and/or strategies in place that specifically support gender equality, relating to 8 areas, as well as gender equality overall.

The percentage of organisations that consult with their employees is also shown, together with the method that they use, and the categories of employees consulted.

It also shows the gender composition of governing bodies and the percentage of organisations that have set a gender composition target for their governing bodies.

Flexible working

This tab displays information about flexible working policies and strategies that have been put in place by employers, as well as the formal and informal types of flexible work offered (e.g. job-sharing, telecommuting, etc).

Support for carers and paid parental leave

This tab shows the proportion of employers that have a policy and/or strategy aimed at supporting employees with family or caring responsibilities.

It also shows the average length of paid primary and secondary carer's leave and payment options offered by employers for 2017, and the proportion of employees who ceased employment while on parental leave

The types of non-leave based support offered by employers are also shown (e.g. on-site childcare, breastfeeding facilities, etc.)

Why are there two graphs for each type of paid parental leave?

Due to substantial changes in the 2016-17 compliance report questionnaire, the 2017 paid parental leave data marks the start of a new longitudinal data series. Employers that provide paid parental leave were asked to advise whether the paid leave, primary and/or secondary, is provided to women only, men only or both genders (e.g. maternity leave for women only and paternity leave for men only). In previous years employers were only required to provide data regardless of gender.

Sex-based harassment & domestic violence

This tab shows the proportion of organisations that have a formal sex-based harassment policy and/or strategy, and the proportion of organisations that provide training to their managers on sex-based harassment. It also illustrates the proportion of employers that have a formal family or domestic violence policy and/or strategy as well as the support measures offered to employees experiencing family or domestic violence.

Comparison section

Can I compare my industry to other industries?

Yes. In this section you can compare two industry segments to show, for example, your industry data side-by-side with a similar industry segment (e.g. 'Tertiary Education' versus 'Adult, Community and Other Education').

The industry segments can also be at different ANZSIC levels (e.g. you could compare a sub-division segment, 'Administrative Services' with a group segment, 'Employment Services'.

Additional information

What does the data represent?

When interpreting the data it is important to remember that it represents only non-public sector employers with 100 or more employees.

Please note, causal relationships cannot be investigated or inferred using the Data Explorer. The tool shows you only how different conditions vary when filters are applied to the data. It does not necessarily indicate cause-effect relationships, correlational associations, or predictive relationships.

How was the data collected?

The data was collected through a secure online portal. Employers uploaded a compliance report containing a workplace profile and reporting questionnaire. Refer to the 2017 indicative format for further information.

Why can't I see my selected data?

The Data Explorer allows you to explore industries down to the ANZSIC Class level, although if there are fewer than five organisations in the selected category the data will not be displayed. This prevents comparisons being made on the basis of very small samples and maintains confidentiality around the gender pay gaps of individual organisations. In these instances, we recommend that you select a higher ANZSIC level in the Data Explorer or remove an organisation size filter where applicable.

Can I export the data to Excel?

Data displayed in the Industries section can be exported to Excel using the link in the top right corner – “Download data as XLSX”.

Where can I find information about a specific organisation?

The Data Explorer does not provide information on individual organisations, it shows data for all organisations and industry segments of interest. If you would like to see information on a specific organisation, you can download public reports from the WGEA website. The public reports do not contain salary data.


The Data Explorer is presented by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency for the purpose of disseminating information for the benefit of the public. The Agency monitors the quality of the information available on the Data Explorer and updates the information regularly. However, the Agency does not guarantee, and accepts no legal liability whatsoever arising from or connected to, the accuracy, reliability, currency or completeness of any material contained on this website or on any linked site.

The Agency recommends that users exercise their own skill and care with respect to their use of this website and that users carefully evaluate the accuracy, currency, completeness and relevance of the material on the website for their purposes. Users should obtain any appropriate professional advice relevant to their particular circumstances.

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency cannot accept any responsibility or liability for outcomes resulting from the use of the Data Explorer, either directly or indirectly.

Help or assistance

If you have difficulty viewing the information in the Data Explorer please ensure you are using recent standard web-browser software (e.g. Chrome, Internet Explorer IE 10 or above, etc). Each of the graphs in the Data Explorer has an associated screen-reader accessible table version of the graphic for persons with special access needs. For further assistance please contact us on wgea@wgea.gov.au.


The Data Explorer was created by Flink Labs (2014 to 2017).