An online tool allowing the public to find out the gender pay gap for their occupation has revealed that women IT and telecommunications directors are paid 6.7% less per hour than men.
The website, built using data from the Office for National Statistics, allows visitors to compare their industry’s gender balance and average pay by gender.
For telecoms engineers, the gap narrows to women earning 1.8% less per hour, though this increases to a £4,000 per annum difference due to working hour differences.
In retail overall, women are paid 4.2% less than men per hour, an average of £7.46 compared to £7.78. Coupled with working pattern differences, this equals just under £4,500 less per year. When split into full-time versus part time staff, the gap increases to 6.3% whereas part-time, the hourly rate difference is 0.3%.
From April 2017 onwards, companies with more than 250 employees will have to report their gender pay and bonus gaps. The change is expected to cover 11 million UK workers.
Commenting on the upcoming rule change, Mininister for Women and Equalities, Justin Greening said, ‘This tool will empower both men and women to challenge this issue in their profession and help people to make more informed decisions about their career.
Employers must play their part in this too and take action to tackle the gender pay gap in their organisation. That’s why we are requiring large employers to publish their gender pay and gender bonus pay gaps for the first time ever and our regulations mean they can start getting ready to report from April next year.’
The current pay gap across all workers stands at 18.1%. Laura Hinton, executive board member and head of people at PwC, said of the recent figures, ‘The current rate of progress towards closing the gender pay gap is too slow and gender pay gap reporting is an important step towards tackling both the symptoms and causes of gender inequality in the workplace.
‘Publishing pay data alone won’t change anything - progress will only happen if organisations use this as an opportunity to understand what’s happening in their business and make some fundamental changes as a result. Bold action is needed to create true equality in the workplace. For the first time, we will have comparable gender pay gap figures across organisations which will be a useful tool to drive accountability and action.’
O2’s HR Director Anne Pickering, spoke to Executive Grapevine in November 2015 where she described the challenge we face in fixing the gender pay gap, stating: ‘The reality is women are still playing catch-up when it comes to reaching senior well-paid positions. If women aren’t in the same roles as men, how can they be on the same wage?
‘The only way to address the gender pay gap once and for all is for employers to focus on building up and supporting a pipeline of female talent from the moment they walk through the door, all the way up to taking a place at the Boardroom table. Whether that’s by providing dedicated ‘Women in Leadership’ programmes, mentoring and training, or going into schools to inspire young girls about the opportunities on offer, there’s plenty that can be done. Only by employers taking concerted action can we ensure that we’re not having the same conversation in 100 years’ time.’