Intelligent CXO Issue 7 - Page 59

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BRITISH WORKERS UNDERESTIMATE THEIR EMPLOYER ’ S GENDER PAY GAP

HR software provider , CIPHR , polled 1,000 UK employees , the majority of which work at medium- or large-sized companies , to find out more about their attitudes towards the gender pay gap .

When asked to identify the current pay gap , opinions vary wildly – with the mean average answer coming in at 37 % ( the median was 33 %). A third of people ( 33 %) think it ’ s over 50 %. Only one in 20 survey respondents ( 5 %) got it right at 15 % or 16 %.
According to the Office for National Statistics ( ONS ), the gender pay gap was 15.5 % in 2020 ( based on median gross hourly earnings for all workers ). Only 4 % of survey respondents think the UK ’ s gender pay gap is zero .
CIPHR ’ s findings suggest that people ’ s perceptions of their own employers are actually more favourable than reality . Only a third of people ( 36 %) think their employer has a gender pay gap in favour of men , and one in fourteen people ( 7 %) think it ’ s vice versa – in favour of women .
On average , two-fifths ( 40 %) of workers under 35 feel that their employers pay their male staff more , compared to around a quarter ( 27 %) of workers over 45 . Around half of the people working in the arts , entertainment or recreation sectors ( 54 %), finance and insurance ( 53 %), IT and software ( 51 %), HR ( 50 %) and legal services ( 46 %) say the same .
When it comes to job hunting , however , people are much less likely to accept pay gaps – perceived or otherwise . Most women ( 58 %) say they wouldn ’ t apply for a job with an organisation that has a gender pay gap ( compared to 38 % of men ). Women are also more likely to be averse to working for an organisation that has an ethnic pay gap , compared to men ( 54 % and 37 % respectively ).
For black women , that figure rises to 57 % and for Asian women it ’ s 71 % ( the average for all workers is 47 % and for workers from ethnic minority backgrounds it ’ s 52 %).
Being more transparent about the decision-making processes for promotions and career advancement , disclosing salary ranges ( including pay and bonuses ), using HR systems for reporting and to identify potential areas that need improvement , and introducing minimum gender and diversity quotas at the interview stage , are just some of the ways that organisations can help close – or at least narrow – their gender pay gap .
Looking at pay gap reporting and pay transparency in general , over twothirds of people believe that gender pay gap reporting and ethnicity pay gap reporting should be mandatory for all UK companies regardless of their size ( 69 % and 61 % respectively ). x
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