Women in commercial real estate have shouldered an incredible burden during the coronavirus pandemic. As a handful of them told Bisnow recently, the combination of remote work, home schooling, and added childcare and caregiving responsibilities have exacerbated existing gender gaps in the industry. As one interviewee said, “the pandemic didn’t create these inequities. It’s multiplied ones from before.”
And, according to a survey released by Indeed earlier this month, the strain in the labor market and the uncertainty currently facing the industry have also made women feel less certain about asking for more support and pay, HR Dive reported.
The survey of 2,000 U.S. adults, taken in December, found that 74% of men and 58% of women were comfortable or somewhat comfortable asking for a raise. Pre-pandemic, those numbers were 81% of men and 66% of women.
The small but noticeable shift is perhaps indicative of the many ways that women have paid an outsized price when it comes to employment and careers during the pandemic; roughly 2.5 million women have left the workforce since the start of the pandemic, which Vice President Kamala Harris recently called a “national emergency.”
Women do feel more comfortable asking for flexibility when it comes to work location, according to the same survey; 80% of women said they felt comfortable doing so now, as opposed to 73% before the pandemic. A January report from the National Women’s Law Center noted that the trend toward accommodation isn’t guaranteed to last post-pandemic; if it doesn’t, it “could prompt some women to leave the labor force.”