There have been many high-profile stories in the media about women being paid less than men for carrying out the same duties. In fact, many women who have been working alongside male colleagues for years are now learning they are being unfairly remunerated for their work. Fortunately, there are steps you can take if you have been affected by the gender pay gap at work. At our leading London recruitment agency, we’ll let you know how to raise a gender pay gap issue.
What did the gender pay gap figures tell us?
In April 2018, over 10,000 big firms published details on their gender pay gap. Three-quarters of these employers were paying men more than women, though the statistics didn’t provide information on whether women were being paid less than men to carry out the same or equivalent duties. It was found that less than one in seven companies paid women more than men and males had the most high-paid jobs. Men were being handed higher bonuses than women, and no individual sector was paying women more than men. Over 1,500 companies failed to report on time, though hundreds of businesses voluntarily published their data.
Undervalued and underappreciated?
The gender pay gap has left employees across the world feeling underappreciated and undervalued. Your employer may be breaking the law if they’re paying you less than a male colleague for doing the same job. In fact, the Equal Pay Act was first passed way back in 1970, which means this has been the case for almost five decades. Sadly, far too many women hold back when it comes to taking action, fearing that they won’t be able to achieve the outcome they deserve. Legal fees can also be incredibly off-putting for many.
Raising the pay gap issue
If you find that you’re being paid less than a male colleague for doing the same or an equivalent job, one of the first things you should do is discuss the issue with your employer, starting with your boss. Ask for a meeting with them to talk about. When you discuss the situation with your employers, it’s best to adopt a calm, professional approach, rather than a confrontational, personal one.
To take it further, you will need to collect evidence that you are being underpaid, and you can source evidence from salary surveys to find out whether your salary is in line with the industry standard. The Equality Act 2010 states that businesses can’t prevent their employees from talking about their salaries with one another, so don’t be afraid to ask your colleagues about their pay.
If you raise concerns with your employer but they fail to address them, the best course may be to take legal action. You don’t need to wait until you’ve left the company before you take legal action and go to an employment tribunal, but you will need to take action within six months if you decide to resign. If you only find out about the pay discrepancy after leaving, you can still take this forward.
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