ENERGY workers with chartered qualifications get higher salaries than those without them while there is still a pay gap between men and women in the sector, survey findings have indicated.

Research for a sector salary and benefits guide completed by Hays recruitment group with the Energy Institute found 82 per cent of respondents with chartered qualifications earned more than £40,000 a year. Only 65 per cent of respondents overall earned more than £40,000 annually.

Almost twice as many people without chartered status earned below £41,000 as those with such a qualification.

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The institute said the report, which covers industries such as oil and gas and utilities, also provided evidence of a gender pay gap.

More than half of women (54 per cent) earned less than £41,000 annually, compared with 36 per cent of respondents overall.

The institute noted the lack of women in specialist and senior roles.

Only three per cent of women earned more than £100,000, compared with 13 per cent of men.

The findings underline how well paid work in the energy sector can be.

More than a quarter, 27 per cent of respondents, earn more than £80,000 a year.

Around two thirds, 63 per cent, saw their salary increase at least in line with the cost of living in 2013.

The report said the shortage of talent is one of the biggest challenges for all energy sectors, amid global competition for staff.

The survey obtained 1,089 reponses.

The Energy Institute describes itself as the leading chartered professional membership body for the industry.