We’re days away from the deadline for British companies to disclose their gender pay and bonus gaps for the last year. You’ve most likely seen this year’s risers and fallers and how many years it will take before the national overall gap beings to shrink – a shocking half a century!
Some organisations are still struggling with the calculations, many leave reporting until the last minute, what’s crucial is that we have a benchmark to focus on improving progression and opportunities to achieve equality at all levels.
This week, The Female Lead headed to the London Business School to hear from the Global Institute of Women’s Leadership and esteemed panellists from the worlds of government, business, academia and media to reflect on 1 year of reporting and the important lessons that we can all take forward into year two.
The story so far
Last April, 10,500 or so eligible employers reported the full extent of pay differences between men and women in UK companies. The results were stark – with more than 85% of companies disclosing a mean pay gap (and 80% a mean bonus gap) in favour of men.
The reporting resulted in a national conversation with the media’s involvement only adding fuel to the fire! It’s likely that this is only the very beginning of both the scope of pay gap reporting, and the impact it will have.
What we’ve learnt so far…
Measurement is a positive start
The gender pay gap reporting is a step in the right direction. Pay differences are now out in the open. Companies are being held accountable and CEOs, chairs and members of the leadership team are finally taking this matter seriously.
We need to debias systems, not people
While some types of unconscious bias training may have some limited positive effects, there is currently no evidence this this training changes behaviour or improves workplace equality. Laura Jones, GIWL Research Associate stated that “We need to put the onus on changing structures – not individuals.”
Improving, measuring and evaluating recruitment, promotion and talent management processes; supporting part-time workers; and creating an environment where women feel that they fit and belong, can enable women to progress. We highly recommend you take a look at the Government’s Equalities Office infographic on what works to reduce the gender pay gap.