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The Actuary The magazine of the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries

Gender pay gap reporting goes live

UK companies in the private, public, and voluntary sector, with 250 or more employees, will have to publish the difference in pay between their male and female staff after new government rules came into force today.

Eliminating gender pay gap is "is good for British business" ©Shutterstock
Eliminating gender pay gap is "is good for British business" ©Shutterstock

The regulations are expected to cover approximately 9,000 employers, and over 15 million employees, with firms required to publish their gender pay gap figures by April 2018.

This comes after a report by McKinsey & Co in September last year showed that eliminating work-related gender pay gaps could add £150bn to annual UK GDP by 2025 through enhanced productivity and business reputation.

Minister for women and equalities, Justine Greening, said: “We have more women in work, more women-led businesses than ever before and the highest proportion of women on the boards of our biggest companies.

“This has helped us to narrow the gender pay gap to a record 18.1% – but we want to eliminate it completely. Helping women to reach their full potential isn’t only the right thing to do, it makes good economic sense and is good for British business.”

As part of the new regulations, employers will be required to publish:

Mean and median gender pay gap figures
The proportion of men and women in each quartile of their pay structure
Pay gaps for any bonuses paid out during the year.

They will also be encouraged to publish an action plan alongside their figures, demonstrating the steps they will take to close gender pay gaps within their organisation.

This comes after workplace experts Acas released guidance earlier this year to help businesses adapt to the new rules, suggesting methods to monitor gender recruitment, salary, and promotion differences.

It also outlines how to best promote family friendly working, flexible hours for men, where to publish gender pay gap data, and the penalties businesses could incur if they don’t comply.

"The UK has made progress in reducing the gender pay gap but we still have lots to do; tackling the issue is in the interests of individuals, organisations and the economy as a whole,” Acas chief executive, Anne Sharp, said.

“The new requirement provides a great opportunity for organisations to look at the issue in depth and to consider whether they can do more to develop their talented women and secure the benefits of greater gender diversity at all levels.”

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