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Small companies in Malaysia’s creative industry offer better pay equality for their male and female staff than large companies, according to digital, creative and marketing recruitment specialist font.

font’s Market Pulse report surveyed 4,350 participants, comparing salaries based on company size, years of experience, gender and qualifications, across the advertising, marketing, creative and multimedia sectors.

It found large companies in these industries pay men an average of 27% more than women, whereas smaller companies offer approximately equal pay. Overall, women earn average of 10% less than men across all sectors, with the exception of advertising, where the pay discrepancy was 31%.

“Salaries on average are lower in small companies than large companies, but the culture tends to place more value on equality and camaraderie,” Karin Clarke, font’s Asia regional director, said.

The report also found women who stayed in their jobs for nine to 10 years were more likely to achieve equal salaries to men with the same amount of experience.

Across all four sectors, women with more than nine years’ experience were earning an average salary that is 9% higher than men. However, men with 16 to 20 years experience still received higher salaries than their female counterparts.

Additionally, the study found women were more likely to jump ship than men, and for much less; women would leave for a 10% pay increase, whereas men would leave for a 16.7% increase.

“I think this comes down to work-life balance, as women are faced with a lot of pressure beyond the workplace, in caring for their children, parents and in-laws,” Clarke said.

“Rather than a higher salary, many women are looking for roles that will allow them to fulfil both duties.”

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