Nearly 80% of UK staff believe men and women are paid equally

There has been much discussion of late regarding the gender pay gap, with Real Business also having featured the topic in its First Women Summit on 4 February. During the debate, Caroline Dinenage, parliamentary under secretary for Women and Equalities and Family Justice, claimed the 19.2 per cent difference in wages did not reflect the pay gap for men and women working full time, or for those aged under 40. As such, the data from the Office of National Statistics is “slightly skewed.”

However, she suggested there was a truly shocking gap that started for women aged 40 and beyond. This gap was revealed by World Economic Forum data, which found that while small improvements had been made to decrease the discrepancy between what men and women earn, the globe would only see both genders make the same amount of money in 2095.

However, Glassdoor’s “Global Gender Pay Gap Report” found that 89 per cent of employees in the countries it surveyed – the US, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the UK – believed men and women of all ages, and across all sectors, are paid equally. When it came to Britain, the number stayed more or less the same – almost 80 per cent.

Read more about the gender pay gap:

While 93 per cent of Americans were in agreement that men and women should be compensated equally, Canada and the UK were the two countries who thought so the least. 

Furthermore, only 27 per cent of Brits were inclined to look to new company policies around pay and compensation to close the gap. But when it came to the gap impacting whether job seekers would apply at a company, 63 per cent said they would rather stay clear of a business that had done nothing to bridge the gap. 

Among those who believe there is a gender pay gap, 38 per cent reported government legislation requiring equal pay as being the method to improve the gap, with employees also citing greater internal pay transparency as being key. Many also indicated clearer communication from senior leaders or Human Resources would further improve the gender pay gap compared to options such as women demanding pay raises more frequently or filing complaints to receive equal pay. 

When it came to leadership and corporate guidance, more men in the US than women believed bringing women into company boards would make a difference to the pay gap, while nearly one-quarter of employed Germans felt more drastic measures, such as lawsuits demanding fair pay, would be key.

Positive strides have been taken to increase the level of female representation on UK boards, but while the prospect of more women on British boards championing the equal pay cause is a brilliant development, every organisation has the potential to change the status quo.

Concerned with issues surrounding gender diversity in business? Don’t miss the Real Business First Women programme:

Drawing on years of the First Women movement and the phenomenal network of pioneering women the Awards has created, this programme features The First Women Awards and The First Women Summit  designed to educate, mentor and inspire women in all levels of business.

Image: Shutterstock

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