Press release:

New research shows companies failing to take action on gender pay gap

Tuesday 04 April 2023
  • A new survey from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) finds that five years on from the introduction of mandatory gender pay gap reporting, only 17% of managers believe their organisation is using gender pay gap data to make positive changes.
  • Nearly half of managers (48%) say their organisation is not very transparent (26%) or not at all transparent (22%) about pay.
  • Only one in ten (12%) said their organisation encourages discussions around pay.
  • CMI’s CEO, Ann Francke OBE, called on employers to bridge the “say-do gap” and “encourage transparent and honest conversations” around gender income inequality.


London - The majority of UK managers have said their organisation does not use gender pay gap data to make a positive difference, with only 17% saying their company takes appropriate action to close income inequality gaps.

In 2017, the UK Government introduced legislation requiring all UK employers with more than 250 employees to publish their gender pay gap.

Yet five years on, in a survey of over 1,000 managers, only half considered their organisation to be transparent about pay, with less than one in five managers (17%) saying their organisation publishes information on how they reach decisions on pay. Only one in 10 (12%) said their organisation encourages discussions around pay. Published pay bands have been shown to increase the number of applications for jobs from women and ethnic minorities.

Almost 65% of managers agree that organisations benefit from pay gap reporting; however, only a quarter (25%) of managers stated that they were aware that their organisation collects gender pay gap data and just over one in five (23%) that it publishes it externally. The survey also finds that very few organisations collect data on other pay gaps such as Ethnicity (15%), Disability (11%) and Socio-economic background (10%).

Ann Francke OBE, Chief Executive at CMI, said:

Organisations think and say they’re doing the right thing to advance gender equality in the workplace - but when it comes to taking action on the gender pay gap, evidence suggests they are failing to deliver.

Our research continues to identify a significant say-do gap in UK workplaces, with managers failing to see their organisations take the appropriate action to create more inclusive workplaces for women and other groups.

Encouraging transparent and honest conversations about pay is critical to tackling gender pay gaps. Ahead of International Women’s Day, employers need to take a closer, more thoughtful look at how they support their female colleagues and work hard to ensure pay is fair and practices are geared towards retaining them and helping them thrive.

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Notes to editors

  • This Managers Voice Pulse Point Poll was conducted between 16th February and 23rd February 2023.
  • A total of 1,083 managers took part in the poll.
  • Please note the findings relate to practising managers in employment in the UK.
  • Spokesperson available for interview.