Government to publish gender pay gap league tables

12 February 2016 -


The government has announced a raft of new measures aimed at closing the gender pay gap including a league table to highlight the worst performing businesses

Matt Scott



Employers performing poorly on gender parity will be highlighted in sector-based league tables under new reforms announced today by the government minister for women and equalities, Nicky Morgan.

The announcement builds on plans first revealed by the Prime Minister last year to force companies with over 250 employees to publish their gender pay gap and bonus pay gap details. The new reforms will also require companies to publish how many women and men are in each pay range.

To highlight where the gap needs tackling, the government plans to publish league tables of companies by sector, which will allow women to see where the gap is being addressed and where more action must be taken.

Announcing the reforms, Morgan said: “In recent years we’ve seen the best employers make ground breaking strides in tackling gender inequality. But the job won’t be complete until we see the talents of women and men recognised equally and fairly in every workplace.

“That’s why I am announcing a raft of measures to support women in their careers from the classroom to the boardroom, leaving nowhere for gender inequality to hide.

“At the same time I’m calling on women across Britain to use their position as employees and consumers to demand more from businesses, ensuring their talents are given the recognition and reward they deserve.”

A watershed moment

Sharing a platform with Morgan earlier this week, CMI chief executive Ann Francke spoke at an invite-only launch event of the Government Equalities Office report into the gender pay gap that lead into today’s reforms.

“The transparency of reporting on gender pay and the gender pipeline will be a watershed in accelerating change,” she said. “Simply put, what gets measured gets managed – and what gets published gets managed even more.

“Shining a light on what men are paid versus women at every level, as well as monitoring the percentage of women at every level, is proven to speed up progress.”

Francke said the need for such reforms was clear, with organisations up and down the country still suffering from gender discrimination.

“Unconscious or unintentional gender bias is still alive and well,” she told delegates. “Just the other day a senior woman at a big bank told me that senior women are leaving despite the big HR-led diversity programme because the C-suite culture was still too macho.

“The CEO of a technology company said he realised that the road-warrior mentality of the all-male sales team was alienating the women and that this culture had caused a spate of female resignations. These are telling examples because diversity programmes must be championed and led by the CEO to be effective and considered a mainstream and normal part of everyday management culture.”

And Francke had one last message for those listening to her call for change: “Let’s do this one thing together. Let’s embrace this change and celebrate Trailblazing Transparency. Thank you.”

The reforms in full

  • New legislation to make employers publish their gender pay gap – In addition to publishing their average gender pay gap and bonus pay gap, around 8,000 employers across the country will have to publish the number of men and women in each pay range
  • Funding to help businesses introduce the new regulations – The government is introducing a new £500,000 support package to help companies implement the regulations, including UK-wide conference events, free online software, targeted support for male dominated-sectors such as STEM, and the publication of a report highlighting those business trailblazing in this area
  • Government plans to shine a light on sectors not closing their gap – The government will recognise those employers making progress to close the gap and those that aren’t by publishing a league table of the pay gap by sector. The first official publication is set to be in 2018
  • Work to get thousands more girls into the careers where the gap is still too big – With just 24% of girls’ entries to A levels being in maths and sciences compared to almost 40% for boys, and the gender pay gap in sectors such as engineering some of the worst across business, the government is aiming to ger 15,000 more entries by girls to maths and sciences by 2020 – around a 20% increase on current numbers
  • A new ministerial group spanning the whole of the UK to look at addressing the pay gap and better opportunities for women – The ministerial group will look at how the government supports women into work and help them to progress once there through sharing data on equalities, sharing learning and evidence of what works well and less well and engaging business, the third sector and civil society.
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