New data shows cost of living impact on women amid gender pay debate

This International Women’s Day, 8 March 2024, we want to tun the spotlight on some of the matters impacting women.

Few have been unscathed by the rising cost of living, but it’s something that is weighing far more heavily on the minds of women.

In Australia 74% of women vs 65% men rate this as a top concern. 

The national gender pay gap sits at 12 per cent currently in Australia. Those with lower wages are known to be more impacted by rising costs, given they spend a greater percentage of their income on the basics. 

Despite equal pay for men and women for equal work being a legal requirement since 1969, half of Australians believe that the gender pay gap exists due to discrimination practices such as biased hiring and unequal promotion opportunities.

Promotion opportunities in particular came under fire with just over half saying men are more likely to be promoted when married with kids than women.

In response, Australians are calling for a fairer and more transparent society. Many want support from government, unions and lawmakers to make equality a reality.

Some responses to the Gender Gap included:

“Companies being more transparent about their hiring practices and remuneration and be held accountable where there are unfair practices and bias against either gender”

“Strengthen and enforce equal pay laws to ensure that employees are paid equally for similar work, regardless of gender. Encourage companies to adopt transparent salary policies, making compensation structures clear and accessible to all employees, reducing the likelihood of gender-based disparities.”

“Same work, same pay. Exposing the companies that are not doing this. Government to pressure organisations and companies to act.”


Women aged between 35-44 are especially affected with 48% stating they are likely or somewhat likely to earn a secondary income in the next 12 months. 

Insights Exchange Founder and CEO Nichola Quail says the data shows more Aussies are opting for a second job, particularly in the gig economy, to help pay for rising costs of living. 

“Our latest data sets show the cost of living crunch is not going anywhere for Aussies and those in this particular demographic are feeling the pinch the most. The expenses are increasing everywhere – mortgage repayments, rents, petrol , groceries – families and especially mothers are often most affected,” she said. 


Insights Exchange is proud to #inspireinclusion and #countherin. Our team is majority women and female-led, from our Founder and CEO Nichola Quail and top performing global researchers to our support teams.

As a growing start-up, we strongly believe in forging women’s economic empowerment and supporting women in their career through development, up-skilling and elevating them into fulfilling careers.

If you’re interested in these insights and want to know more about how our team can deliver key insights for growth, reach out to us at: