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Artificial intelligence reveals gender bias in the workplace, says study

Palatine Analytics studied gender bias in the workplace with the help of artificial intelligence.

(BrianAJackson/iStock)

Most of the managers regard themselves as operating free of any bias, to reward their employees on the basis of merit only but a new study of five companies, that is powered by artificial intelligence, it tells a more disturbing story.

In the aftermath of sexual misconduct revelations that rocked a wide range of companies are looking for ways to improve and to ensure a bias-free workplace for their employees.

The Boston-based firm Palatine Analytics studies issues, analyzed a wealth of data, including employee feedback and surveys, gender and salary of the information and one-on-one check-ins between managers and employees—using the power of artificial intelligence.

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“We realized that there is a very limited amount of data about the causes behind why career prospects are worse for women,” Palatine Analytics CEO Archil Cheishvili said in a statement.

In the companies that Palatine studied, the C-level suite was on average strongly dominated by men, while entry-level positions had 45 percent of women and 55 percent male breakdown.

But would the data answer the important question: do women receive fewer promotions and lower wages due to poor performance or due to bias?

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“We collected the data, made anonymous and did analytics. We had data on more than a dozen important variables, such as gender, length of employment, the position, the name of the manager, the salaries and the number of promotions/raises received,” Cheishvili said.

In all participating companies, evaluation of the performance and the 360-degree feedback results were linked to promotion and compensation. To understand the reason why women received less salary increases and promotions, the firm had to find out if the performance reviews were biased against women.

The AI-powered research showed that men and women were equally as likely to meet the objectives, but the men were still 25 percent more positive evaluations in comparison with women who are in the same role.

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Looking at the data, they discovered that women who are nearly identical evaluation of the performance of the scores of men and women, while 70 percent of the men higher evaluations to men than to women. This difference is more pronounced in senior positions, where approximately 75 percent of the men higher reviews on men than on women.

According to Pew Research, 42 percent of AMERICAN women say they have experienced a kind of discrimination in the workplace because of their gender—with 25 percent saying that they deserve less than a man doing exactly the same work.

Most experts agree that gender bias does not have to be broken, until there is more transparency in the compensation and review process.

“The era of closed companies is over and the time will come that the reasons behind every major decision in companies to be transparent,” Cheishvili said. “This reduces the workplace prejudices, increase the productivity of employees and increase the employee happiness levels.”

Christopher Carbone is a reporter for FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @christocarbone.

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