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Construction industry revealed to have one of the lowest gender splits for self-employed workers

todayJuly 16, 2021


New research has revealed that the construction industry has the second-lowest percentage of self-employed women in the UK, with only 3.9% of the industry’s self-employed workers being female. The research analysed government data to discover the industries that are seeing the most (and least) female entrepreneurs. 

The electricity, gas and air conditioning supply industry is exclusively ruled by men, with no women self-employed within the industry, compared to 9,000 men. 

The construction (3.9%), transport and storage (6.9%) and mining and quarry (9.1%) industries also have very small numbers of self-employed women, instead of being dominated by men.

Lize Haskell, Chief Administrative Officer at Tide, which carried out the research, commented on the findings: “Our research reveals that the number of self-employed women has increased by 148% since 1984, with over 1.6m women in self-employment in the UK today. It’s great to see how women have made huge strides in entrepreneurship in recent years, with more female-fronted businesses than ever before.

“Starting your own business and taking that first step into entrepreneurship can be daunting, but there is lots of support and initiatives out there to help empower you. At Tide, we’re committed to supporting women in the UK in starting and running their own business and we have set ourselves the target of helping 50,000 women in starting their business by the end of 2022.”

The top 10 industries with the highest number of female founders

Rank Industry Self-employed (male) Self-employed (female) Percentage of self-employed who are female
1 Electricity, gas, air cond supply 9,000 0 0.0%
2 Construction 905,000 37,000 3.9%
3 Transport and storage 298,000 22,000 6.9%
4 Mining and quarrying 10,000 1,000 9.1%
5 Water supply, sewerage, waste 10,000 2,000 16.7%
6 Agriculture, forestry and fishing 135,000 36,000 21.1%
7 Manufacturing 178,000 55,000 23.6%
8 Information and communication 170,000 54,000 24.1%
9 Financial and insurance activities 74,000 24,000 24.5%
10 Wholesale, retail, repair of vehicles 268,000 131,000 32.8%

The results of the study can be viewed here:

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