UK employers unprepared for gender pay gap reporting

 

With new legislation set to come into force in the new financial year, totaljobs are reporting that around a third of employers are still failing to review salaries in terms of gender to safeguard against discrimination and 82% have no plans to carry out a review.

The Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017 come into force on 6th April, making it mandatory for companies with 250 employees or more to record and analyse gender pay and bonus figures going forward.

Gender Pay Gap Information reporting has been designed to both address the issue of gender pay gap inequality and to encourage employers to explore the potential reforms that will enable fairer, more inclusive pay structures.

Affecting around 8,000 businesses employing approximately 11 million people, the legislation will effectively name and shame offending companies, with the intention of giving employers the motivation to make changes that ensure men and women are on a level playing field.

However, at this late stage, many UK employers remain unprepared. And that may be because in the absence of the government not highlighting specific actions to address the issues, it’s up to individual companies to decide what they want to do with the published data.

Increased transparency in itself may not be enough to bridge the gender pay gap when the totaljobs report identifies that over half of companies do not coach hiring managers on equal pay and gender equality.

Totaljobs surveyed 4,700 employees and 145 employers, revealing that 82% of companies are not reviewing their gender equality/equal pay policy and almost 60% do not have salary information defined by role and gender.

However, while just over half of employers feel ‘very confident’ that salaries are equal, the feeling among employees is split by gender. 23% of women feel men are paid more for the same role and 44% feel that both genders get equal pay - a figure that is 58% for men.

Research also showed that men are more likely to receive a bonus and, when they do, they typically receive more. In 2016/17, 43% of men received a bonus averaging £2,059, while 38% of women received a bonus which averaged £1,128.

Just as interestingly, the report identifies that three quarters of women would more inclined to increase their salary by moving jobs as opposed to going through the discomfort of negotiating a raise, even though the same figure would expect a higher salary if they move roles.

John Salt, director, totaljobs said: “The remuneration decision-making process needs to be made more transparent – pay decisions should not be kept to the confines of top management and board meetings. Our research found 26% of men and 31% of women don’t know how their company makes decisions on salary and pay rises. This legislation forcing the review of pay structures could be the internal reflection organisations need to avoid future discrimination and effect positive cultural change.”

Monday, 3 April 2017

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UK employers unprepared for gender pay gap reporting