In recognition of International Women’s Day 2017, University of Phoenix commissioned a 2016 survey on workplace diversity, surveying 10,000 registered voters to better understand how both men and women perceive women in the workplace. Undoubtedly, women have made incredible progress in many fields over the last few decades, however there are still areas of gender inequality in need of improvement.  The survey was used to take  a deeper look at where Americans think companies are succeeding with equality in the workplace, as well as where they’re coming up short.

The survey showed that while the majority of respondents say working conditions for women have improved in the past 10 years, progress appears to have stalled in several areas, most notably in leadership roles and equal compensation. Also, the survey reveals that women take on the majority of household work and childcare.

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The majority of respondents believe that working conditions have improved for women over the past 10 years.


Although conditions have improved, progress in pay equality has stalled. Only 33 percent of women say they receive equal pay for the same job as their male counterpart.

That being said, nearly 80 percent of respondents have directly reported to a female boss.


Our nation still has a long way to go to achieve complete gender equality, and it’s rare to achieve complete balance one way or the other. The key is to embrace what needs to be the priority at the moment. A key area to focus on includes female leadership in the workplace.  


This new research shows that women spend more time with the household roles than their male counterparts.



Additional Findings

Some of the biggest gaps in gender equality:

  • 79 percent of respondents have worked for a female boss, but only 34 percent said they have worked for a company with a female president, owner or CEO.
  • 33 percent of respondents believe there are too few positive female leaders at the company they work for.
  • Less than half of respondents (43%) believe the leadership at their company would support adopting a maternity leave policy.



This poll was conducted by Morning Consult from Aug. 23 – Sept. 3, 2016, among a national sample of 10,113 registered voters. The interviews were conducted online and the data were weighted to approximate a target sample of registered voters based on age, race/ethnicity, gender, educational attainment, region, annual household income, home ownership status and marital status. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 1 percentage points. For complete survey methodology, please contact Jennifer Marshall.