the fastest growing UK industries for women revealed

New research has revealed the fastest growing UK industries for women, with transport support, computer programming, and head office management leading the way*.

To mark International Women’s Day 2019, the study explores labour market data from the Office of National Statistics to reveal where new opportunities are opening up for women and where potential new career paths may exist.

Measured between 1998 and 2018, the top ten fastest growing industries for women are:
Transport support – up 340 per cent
Computer programming – up 196.3 per cent
Head office management – up 191.27 per cent
Security and investigation – up 181.25 per cent
Motoring industry – up 173.68 per cent
Land transport – 172.97per cent
Information services – up 146.15 per cent
Shipping – up 133.33 per cent
Support for finance and insurance – up 124.18 per cent
Manufacture of fuel – up 100 per cent

Driving these pioneering industries is a combination of overall industry growth and moves to balance the gender diversity gap within them. Five of the ten fastest growing industries for women were also found in the top ten industries for closing the gender diversity gap, meaning they have seen a substantial rise in the percentage of women in their total workforce across the last 20 years. These five industries are:

Manufacture of fuel – employment of women as percentage of the workforce up 13.89 percentage points
Transport support – up 13.39 percentage points
Motoring industry – up 12.18 percentage points
Land transport – up 11.73 percentage points
Security and investigation – up 9.18 percentage points

The data highlights that progress is being made for women in the STEM fields, with computer programming demonstrating the second highest growth rate for women of all industries in the UK.

Despite this, if the current rate of change in the gender diversity gap is maintained, it will be another 60 years before numbers of women in computer programming match those of men. Women currently make up 29.89 per cent of the computer programming workforce, with a growth of 6.34 per cent since 1998. To get to 50 per cent of the workforce at the same rate will take another six decades.

Head of HR at instantprint, Vicki Russell, commented,

This data provides up-to-date insight into new career opportunities for women. We undertook the analysis to highlight to those establishing a career or starting out on the road to developing their own business where exciting opportunities exist.

The results highlight the changing face of women in the workplace, and also indicate where more needs to be done to balance gender in the UK’s workforce. This should prompt companies to assess their own gender diversity gaps, and consider how they can improve, while also highlighting to women where they can look to for expanding industries to work in.

*by instantprint


Interested in diversity in the workplace?  We recommend the Diversity and Inclusion Conference 2019.





Aphrodite is a creative writer and editor specialising in publishing and communications. She is passionate about undertaking projects in diverse sectors. She has written and edited copy for media as varied as social enterprise, art, fashion and education. She is at her most happy owning a project from its very conception, focusing on the client and project research in the first instance, and working closely with CEOs and Directors throughout the consultation process. Much of her work has focused on rebranding; messaging and tone of voice is one of her expertise, as is a distinctively unique writing style in my most of her creative projects. Her work is always driven by the versatility of language to galvanise image and to change perception, as it is by inspiring and being inspired by the wondrous diversity of people with whom paths she crosses cross!

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Aphrodite is also a professional painter.