New regulations came into force this April that require companies with over 250 employees to report on their gender pay gap. But what does this mean?
People, says Sian Webb at Gapsquare, are quick to confuse equal pay with the gender pay gap.
“I was recently sat in a pub with some friends and they said that they were looking forward to finding out if their male colleague with the same job title and same experience was being more than them. I was also recently sat in a meeting with a large technology company and their Financial Director stated that the regulations were “ridiculous” as they are not comparing “like for like”.
That’s because we do not have to compare “like for like”. That would be an equal pay issue – something that is a legal requirement since the 1970 Equal Pay Act. If a male colleague has the same job title, same pay grade, same experience but earns more than the female counterpart, then there could in fact be an Equal Pay claim and legal advice should be sought.
The gender pay gap reporting requirements however, are not to do with Equal Pay. They compare the overall company male average pay to the female average pay and are more likely to reflect the clustering of women in low paid, part time roles, occupational segregation as there are less women in roles that pay more, and general lack of women in leadership roles.