Creating interactive visualisations from real data – identifying the gender pay gap
March 9, 2017

Anthony Radik, Senior Manager


At Synergy, we love playing with data.

Especially if there’s a dollar sign in there somewhere – we are accountants after all!

Recently, we’ve been playing around with some of the taxation statistics published by the Australian Taxation Office – just to see if we can find and share any interesting tidbits.

Here’s the first thing we have to share – an interactive visualization (‘viz’) on the gender pay gap, based on the taxable income Australians reported in their tax returns for the 2013‑14 financial year.

Some of the things you can see in this viz will come as no surprise to most people. For example:

  • The ‘Professionals’ group has the highest income on average, topped by surgeons and anaesthetists. Other medical professionals, lawyers, judges and financial dealers are also at the top of the income rankings (to see this, move the ‘Avg. Taxable Income’ slider so the left end is around $180,000).
  • In almost all professions, men earn more than women on average, and the disparity is generally higher for higher paying professions.

Others are a bit less obvious. In particular:

  • There are a few professions where women earn more than men on average (despite being vastly outnumbered by their male colleagues). Some interesting examples are:
    • earthmoving plant operators,
    • truck drivers, and
    • apprentice/trainee electricians.

(To see these, select ‘Females earn more’ in the ‘Income Disparity’ filter)

  • There is a significant pay gap even in occupations where you might expect pay rates to be fairly standardised, such as the Australian Defence Force (to see this, search for ‘Defence Force Members – Other Ranks’ in the ‘Search for an Occupation’ box).

This is an indirect way of assessing the gender pay gap – taxable income is not the same thing as take-home pay, and these figures don’t account for part-time work or level of experience. Nonetheless, we think it’s an interesting perspective on taxation statistics.

Watch this space – we’ll have a few more visualisations to share over the next few months.

If you need some insights into your data, give us a call at Synergy Group. We have a wealth of experience in data analytics and visualization and can:

  • complete the analytics for you (you give us the data, we provide visualisations and insights),
  • run a pilot project, to demonstrate what’s possible with an analytics approach, and
  • help build your in-house analytics capability.