Gender pay gap: business leaders admit 'widespread problem'

Written by
Changeboard Team

25 Oct 2016

25 Oct 2016 • by Changeboard Team

A new study has revealed that the UK business community is struggling to address the gender pay gap.

In a survey of 250 UK executives within organisations of over 250 employees, Xactly found that the majority of respondents (85%) admitted the gap exists in UK businesses, with over two thirds (68%) admitting they have personally witnessed a difference in pay between men and women.

Almost half (49%) believe the reason to be “a natural prejudice against women within that organisation.” 

While 62% believe the gap to exist because women take time out to have children and then struggle to catch up with male peers, 72% of executives believe women will never catch-up.

Some 92% of leaders would be disappointed if a gender pay gap existed in their company, with 82% of respondents indicating their business has a clear strategy to address any imbalances. However, 38% admitted they lack the data and analytics capabilities needed to identify the gap.

Tom Castley, vice president EMEA at Xactly said: “The key to closing the pay gap is to understand why it persists. Part of the problem is that most businesses lack the ability to access, analyse and action the data needed to highlight the gap. Data is the first and critical step in helping to readdress the pay balance, it is the solution and businesses need help to make it work for them.”

Some 17% of respondents to Xactly’s survey state that attempts to close the gap need to be government led, despite 26% of executives being unaware of the new policy. 

By 4th April 2018, businesses with more than 250 employees will need to publish results of their gender pay gap analysis on their website. The government is also suggesting that companies create an action plan to address the gender pay gap. 

Castley added: “The Government can play a part in helping to close the gender pay gap. But businesses also need the analysis of their pay information to make informed decisions about it.

“The new policy is one part of the solution. The survey results clearly indicate that business leaders want to create pay equality need the data to equip them properly to take on the gender pay gap and close it.”