There are significant gender pay gaps within some of Australia’s largest tech firms, according to new data released publicly for the first time.

Under legislation passed by the Labor government last year, all Australian private companies with more than 100 employees are required to report gender pay information to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA), with this data made public this morning.

The data includes the median gender pay gap for salaries within a company, and the median gap for overall remuneration, which includes bonuses and overtime.

It does not measure whether a man and a woman are paid differently in the same role, but the overall differences in pay for men and women within the same company.

The stats reveal an overall median gender pay gap for salary of 14.5 per cent, which increases to 19 per cent when it comes to remuneration.

Of the 5,000 companies that are required to provide data to the WGEA, 30 per cent had a pay gap within the “neutral” range of -5 to 5 per cent, while more than 60 per cent had a median employer gender pay gap of over 5 per cent in favour of men.

Half of the companies had a gender pay gap of more than 9 per cent.

Pay gaps in the tech industry

Tech companies fall within two industries under the data release: information media and telecommunications; and professional, scientific and technical services.

Both of these industries had an above average gender pay gap.

The information media and telecommunications sector has a 22.5% gap when it comes to median salary, and a 24 per cent gap for remuneration.

The gap is wider in professional, scientific and technical services, at 26 per cent for remuneration and 25 per cent for base salaries.

One of the worst performing tech companies in terms of the gender pay gap data was software firm Rokt, which is preparing for a listing on the Nasdaq.

According to the stats, Rokt’s Australian operations has a gender pay gap of 35 per cent for salaries and more than 52 per cent for remuneration.

In a blog post addressing the figures, Rokt chief executive Bruce Buchanan said that employees at Rokt are paid the same for the same roles, but that gap exists because the Australian workforce is made up of mostly product and engineering roles.

He said the company is trying to improve gender diversity within this team.

Australian tech darling Atlassian has a gender pay gap generally in-line with the overall average, but performed better than the average figures for tech companies.

At Atlassian, the media salary gap is 17 per cent, while the remuneration gap is 18 per cent. According to the figures, just under 70 per cent of Atlassian’s Australian workforce are men, while 80 per cent of its upper quartile are male.

In an additional statement along with the statistics, Atlassian global head of talent Avani Prabhakar said that the company is looking to improve representation of women in technical and senior roles.

“Our gender pay gap is not a result of equal pay issues,” Prabhakar said in the post.

Tech giant REA Group revealed a salary gender pay gap of 15 per cent and a remuneration gap of 13 per cent.

“We don’t pay people differently on the basis of gender at REA, but we can focus our approach on closing the gap that exists even further, and target those areas where we can have the greatest impact,” the company said in a statement.

The salary gap at fintech giant Afterpay is 24 per cent, while Wisetech has a remuneration gap of 24 per cent.

Other major Australian tech companies such as Culture Amp, Canva, Xero and Airwallex had gender pay gaps significantly below the industry norm.

How global tech firms fare

Many global tech giants also reported significant pay gaps in their Australian operations.

Spotify reported a remuneration gender pay gap of more than 26 per cent, while TikTok’s was just under 20 per cent. Google revealed a salary gap of just 3 per cent, while Facebook has a pay gap that marginally favours women in its Australian offices.

In a statement coinciding with the release of the figures, Minister for Women Katy Gallagher said the publicising of the data is a “historic step towards transparency and accountability in addressing gender inequality”.

“Transparency and accountability are critical for driving change,” Gallagher said.

“By shining a light on gender pay gaps at an employer level, we are arming individuals and organisations with the evidence they need to take meaningful action to accelerate closing the gender pay gap in Australian workplaces.”

WGEA CEO Mary Woolridge said the data should be a “catalyst for action and change”.

Don’t give them contracts

In a statement, the Greens welcomed the release of the data but raised concerns that many of the poor performing companies were political donors, and said parties should commit to not accepting donations from companies with a gender pay gap.

“It’s alarming to see many of the employers with enormous pay gaps are not only donors to the major parties, but the recipients of large government grants and contracts as well,” said Greens leader in the senate and spokesperson on women, Senator Larissa Waters.

“We are calling on the government to stop subsidising discrimination.

“Government should not be gifting commonwealth contracts or grants to businesses that have a gender pay gap."