United Kingdom companies must publish gender pay gaps

Iceland was ranked first in the World Economic Forum's 2015 Global Gender Gap Index, followed by Norway, Finland and Sweden.

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.

Companies will also be encouraged to publish "action plans" showing how they will attempt to close any gaps.

Applying to both the public and private sector, it would prohibit any discrimination not just on gender, but also on race, religion, disability, occupational disability, age and sexual orientation grounds. This has helped us to narrow the gender pay gap to a record 18.1%, but we want to eliminate it completely.

A report from January 2017 confirmed that women in their 20s in the United Kingdom have seen the pay gap halve to 5 percent, though this discrepancy with men's earnings widens in their 30s.

As BBC News reports, half of the United Kingdom workforce will be affected by the new rules, this amounts to 9,000 employers and more than 15 million employees.

Employers will publish figures from a "snapshot" period in April, calculating the median and mean pay gaps, the proportion of men and women in each quartile of the payroll and the gaps reflected in any bonuses - including the proportions of male and female bonus recipients.

"It's imperative that we act now, especially when our research showed 51 per cent of employers don't coach or prepare their management on equal pay and gender equality".

The benefits of helping women to unlock their talents are huge - eliminating work-related gender gaps could add £150 billion to our annual GDP by 2025. Female construction project managers are only 3.2% below their male colleagues, while female civil engineers are actually paid 2.8% more than male civil engineers. "I am proud that the United Kingdom is championing gender equality and now those employers that are leading the way will clearly stand out with these requirements".

In the East Midlands the average female worker would need an average 26% wage hike - around £6,800 a year - to achieve parity with average male wages in the region.

Companies with 250 or more employees must reveal their gender pay gaps within the next year to fulfil a new legal requirement.

If employers fail to comply by the April 2018 deadline, they will be contacted by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission.

Fifty-one percent of employed women (and 37 percent of men) would be more attracted to work at a company if it had a strong diversity programme.



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