Mar 06

The Gender Pay Gap

This week we celebrate International Women’s Day, a day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women and this year’s theme is #EmbraceEquity.

This time last year, survey results showed that 15% of Britons think that gender inequality doesn’t exist, and whilst men were more likely to hold this view than women (19% vs 11%), the research showed an interesting picture of people failing to accept the reality of inequality, despite there being quite a lot of evidence to show this.

Businesses have their role to play in creating equity for women and men, and one of the ways they can demonstrate this is through their Gender Pay Gap reporting.

What is Gender Pay Gap reporting?

Simply put, the gender pay gap is the difference in average pay between men and women. Each year, businesses with more than 250 employees are required to report on the differences internally between women and men’s pay in a Gender Pay Gap Report.

This report must include:

  1. The percentage of men and women in each hourly pay quartile
  2. The mean (average) gender pay gap in men’s and women’s hourly pay
  3. The median gender pay gap in men’s and women’s hourly pay
  4. The percentage of men and women receiving bonus pay
  5. The mean (average) gender pay gap in men’s and women’s bonus pay
  6. The median gender pay gap in men’s and women’s bonus pay

There are rules about how the above should be calculated to ensure organisations are reporting the same data and the reports must be published by the deadline in late March/early April on the government website and on their own public facing website.

The gender pay gap is a measure of the comparative hourly wage of men and women in an organisation at a single point in time. It is affected by how many women there are at each grade and their relative position on the pay scale. If a workforce has a particularly high gender pay gap, this can be due to a variety of factors and deeper analysis is required to determine what the cause may be in different organisations so organisations usually choose to provide a supporting narrative alongside their results. They will also often include an action plan to tackle inequities and reduce their gender pay gap.

Gender Pay Gap vs Equal Pay

The Gender Pay Gap is different to equal pay. Equal pay deals with the pay differences between men and women who carry out the same jobs, similar jobs or work of equal value. It is unlawful to pay people unequally because they are a man or a woman.

The UK Gender Pay Gap

According to ONS data, the Gender pay gap for full time employees at April 2022 was 8.3%. This means that women’s hourly pay was 8.3% lower than men’s on average, or for each £1 that a man earnt, a woman would only earn £92p on average. This gap has actually increased by over half a percentage point from 2021 (7.7%) but is still in line with a downward trend and the ONS recommends looking at the overall trend over time rather than specific years, especially since the pandemic when gender pay gap reporting was suspended for the 2020 year.

There is an even larger disparity when you look at the different age groups. The gap increases from 0.9% amongst 18 to 21 year olds rising with age up to 13.9% in the over 60 group as shown in the below graph.

Further commentary and results can be found on the ONS website and you can also look at individual companies gender pay gaps (including historical data) on the Gender Pay Gap Service website.

Even if you’re not large enough to have to report on your Gender Pay Gap, we can help you assess this for your business and support you to build initiatives to tackle this. Get in touch on

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