PwC comments on BIS committee's calls for mandatory pay audits

Published at 14:05 PM on 20 June 2013

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Committee has called for the Government to introduce regulations to require large private sector employers to undertake equal pay audits.

Dawn Nicholson, partner at PwC, said:

“This is a huge step in the right direction. It is hard to see how any significant progress in closing the gender wage gap can be made without companies being required to examine their gender pay gaps in the workplace.

“While UK companies are making progress in closing the gender wage gap, this progress is not quick enough. The current voluntary approach set out by the Government is not sufficient, has not had the desired effect and needs to go further. Greater reporting transparency will force many companies to reassess whether their pay practices are fair and will almost certainly cause a shift in gender pay patterns. Such reporting can also yield valuable information about the workforce and identify "hotspots" and any areas of concern."

Vanessa Morgan, partner, PwC Legal, said:

“Whether equal pay audits become mandatory or not, companies should still be looking to carry them out to identify and understand any bias in how they pay and reward their staff. Equal pay audits will give companies a clear view of their position and allow them to understand why and where the bias is happening. The results should form a key part of companies’ pay and reward processes and be used to challenge and inform future pay decisions. It is often easier to make pay and promotion decisions for someone "in your own image". Managers need to be given the tools to look beyond this and deal with the challenges of a diverse and changing workforce.

“Given the upcoming changes to Employment Tribunal's powers to order equal pay audits, companies which voluntarily conduct equal pay audits now will effectively be insuring themselves against any future equal pay orders.”

ENDS

For more information contact:

Amy Tiernan
PR Manager - pensions, pay and HR, PwC
Tel:020 7804 0556
Mobile:07852 941 236


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