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Eva Keogan

Aviva Twitter advertising backfires

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Andy Milner
1 hour ago, Eva Keogan said:

Interesting chart - but no Germany - this report shows a high gap there. They've started 'Gender Marketing' to offer women discounted prices which reflect the pay gap - what do you think of this? It's a great way to highlight the issue in a positive way as a temporary measure.

WWW.DW.COM

Women in Germany are still paid 21 percent less compared to men in terms of average gross hourly earnings. To highlight upcoming "Equal Pay Day," female Berlin commuters are being offered gender-discount tickets.

 

 

I agree it's a good way to both highlight the issue and to make men possibly feel some of the feelings of unfairness that many women must feel around the gpg!

 

It reminds me of videos I've seen where pubs and coffee shops have added a "man-tax" as a stunt for a more provocative way of doing the same.

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    • Eva Keogan
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      Direct quote from Investment Week: The number of firms in the UK reporting their Gender Pay Gap (GPG) figures by the deadline has fallen by more than a thousand, amid claims firms have restructured businesses or transferred staff to avoid being obliged to report, or have ditched reporting altogether under the perception they will not face repercussions.
       
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      This is quite worrying to read and it's not just Investment Week which has reported on this but to down size companies so they are below the 250-person threshold for reporting is incredibly cynical. Has anyone found evidence of this? Also, using Brexit as a smokescreen is not going to wash next year.
       
       
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      The Investment Association just published their report "CLOSING THE GAP: ADDRESSING THE GENDER PAY GAP" which in part 3 looks at the "Industry Initiatives for Change". A very welcome publication that gives a good summary of what our industry (although I would think any industry) can do to close the gap, concentrated around:
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      The latest Gender Pay Gap figures are not showing a nice picture with minimal shrinking of the overall figure from 9.7% to 9.6%. More than a quarter of companies pay women over 20% less than men based on median hourly pay. Just 1.5% pay male employees 20% less than their female staff.
       
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      This is where the true challenge lies.  Current legislation does not oblige an explanation for the change in GPG or even a summary of how the GPG will be reduced. Neither is there a penalty for certain GPG levels or when the gap is worsening instead of improving. The hope was and is that this reporting will create certain self-regulation but now we are in this second year of reporting and it seems to be just a box-ticking exercise.
       
      Nevertheless, various reasons for the existence of the pay gap are well understood, with some directly related with work
       
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      There are many other reasons which are not direct related to work and are more about caring responsibilities, with women still undertaking the majority of child or elderly care, reducing the participation of women in the workplace (either permanent or for a certain time). Some argue this to be a choice, however the Equalities and Human Rights Commission found that one in nine pregnant women had been let go from their jobs or treated so poorly they felt they had to leave. Equally lower participation of women (in general or in specific industries) itself is no reason for a GPG; the GPG would be zero if this lower participation would still result in an equivalent percentage of women then men in all positions and with equal pay for seniority.
       
      Equally there is an increasing number of women who are self-employed (for reasons possibly related to the GPG or the reasons of its existence) and although not part of the GPG reporting statistics, also face the pay gap in this area.
      More specific reasons for the GPG are the fact that the top jobs in most companies are still held by men (less than 30% of Board members are female and only 5% of the FTSE100 has a female CEO). Not only have these positions in general the highest pay but remuneration of these positions is accompanied by significant incentives and bonuses.
       
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      On the positive side in some cases a widening GPG might mean progress, as women are hired or promoted in entry level more senior jobs; this will initially widen the GPG before they move up the ranks and start reducing the GPG. Unfortunately, the GPG reporting does not show this.
       
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      Iceland even goes as far as implementing a rating of job positions on among others, “physical strain” and “responsibility”. If two employees doing a job with the same score and are not being paid the same, the company has to fix it.
       
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      If we accept the choice of women (and their spouses!) to (temporarily) take the responsibility for caring roles we should equally encourage:
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      I strongly believe we need to move away from just looking at the numbers if we want to create lasting change and just creating new policy is not doing it. We must challenge the traditional role of men and women in society, not just with regards to caring roles but also for example education. Just beating the drum will not move the dial but longer lasting (forced) dialogue through routes such as ESG, could push the boundaries.
       
      We need to look beyond the parameters of the report and move outside of the box as a matter of urgency otherwise we will still talk about the gaps in ten or fifteen years and just say ‘nothing has changed much’.
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