Millennials are trying to change the world, especially when it comes to work. And according to new research by PayScale and Millennial Branding, it appears that Millennials are doing just that — this time, by reducing the gender pay gap.
The study, conducted by PayScale and Millennial Branding, assessed the pay difference for Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials (those born between 1982 and 2002). It found that the discrepancy among this generation is the lowest of all, though it increases as employees climb the career ladder.
For entry-level jobs, the salary difference for Millennials was 2.2 percent; Baby Boomers came in at 2.7 percent, while Generation X is highest at 3.6 percent, according to the National Journal. As employees rise in the ranks, though, the gap widens. Millennials now report a 4.9 percent difference while Baby Boomers are at 6.2 percent and Generation X is at 7.4 percent.
This change could be attributed to employers’ awareness and conviction that men and women are equal in the workforce.
“Employers are more aware and are trying to get ahead of any potential gender bias in terms of pay,” Lydia Frank of PayScale tells National Journal.
Despite, the larger numbers for higher-level jobs, entry-level positions are actually the best indicator for the future pay scale. Higher wages for entry-level jobs indicate future increased earnings. Therefore, if there is a smaller pay gap in the beginning, there’s a good chance that trend will continue as employees progress through their careers.
There are a few important things for Millennials to remember about the work environment, though. First, show your worth in the beginning and talk to your employer about what your salary because it will benefit you later in your career.
“If you don’t negotiate in that first job, it compounds over time,” Millennial workplace expert Lindsey Pollak says. “You won’t necessarily be able to make up for it later.”
Second, Millennials are also known as the boomerang generation because they switch from career to career. While it’s important to find a job you like, employers will reward employees who are loyal and stay with the company, so it may be worth sticking it out for a few years.
“I’ve seen a lot of boomerang careers among younger workers,” Pollak explains to National Journal. “They think the grass is always greener, but that’s not always the case.”