Girls in ICT Day. Ada Lovelace Day. International Women’s Day. What do all of these have in common? They’re all examples of how much better we are at celebrating the achievements of women and proactively increasing the profile of girls and women in unrepresented areas, such as STEM. But all of this positivity and praise around female empowerment has been overshadowed by a very sensitive topic of conversation: the gender pay gap.
The countdown is on until all employers in the UK with a team of 250 or more employees must publish the results of their gender pay gap analysis under new laws. The gender pay gap gives a snapshot of the gender balance within an organisation. It measures the difference between the average earnings of all male and female employees, irrespective of their role or seniority.
Take the technology sector as an example. Here, the gender pay gap is currently reported at 25%, slightly higher than the national average (18.1%).
Creating a collaborative environment which is open to different ideas, perspectives and styles of thinking is crucial for any business. For this reason, the figures are troubling: they point to a simple truth – there needs to be a collective effort to encourage more women into the IT industry, where they can enjoy rewarding, creative and flexible careers.
With this in mind, here are five things to consider when reporting your gender pay gap:
1. Engage leadership across the business
The whole business needs to be accountable to make progress, not just HR. Whilst the responsibility has long been placed on HR personnel, closing the gender pay gap is not a quick fix. There needs to be a shift in the mind-set of individuals across the business. After all – two heads are better than one.
2. Know your data
While this data provides a valuable tool for helping you understand why you are missing out on female talent, having the stats is not enough. . You will need to really interrogate your data to explain your current position and identify how to move forward.
3. Involve a multi-disciplinary team
As the gender pay reporting is an incredibly sensitive, controversial, yet completely necessary topic to approach, any plans or decisions around this must involve a multi-disciplinary team so you can benefit from a range of perspectives and skills.
4. Have a plan
This is an opportunity to look at improving your performance on gender equality. Gender pay gap reporting is a critical step in our plans to attract, retain and develop a diverse talent population. So – what will you do to make sure your gender pay gap is smaller when you report again next year?
5. Be honest
Your employees and customers want to hear how you feel about your gap and what you’re doing about it. If you’re not happy with your results don’t try to put a positive spin on them. Tell people you want to be better and explain what you’re doing to make that happen.
Embodying a diverse workforce makes for a collaborative environment filled with different ideas and thinking methods, which allow staff to be themselves.
And it is only by engaging a diverse array of people in tech that we can hope to protect the future competitiveness of the UK economy. After all, when we get diversity and inclusion right, everyone – from individuals and teams to the broader business – benefits.
Click here and download our gender pay gap report.
Published on in Responsible Business