Gender pay gap still not clear to four in ten employees, despite reporting legislation

Victoria WalderseeData Journalist
August 02, 2018, 5:52 PM GMT+0

Four months on from legislation on gender pay gap reporting, YouGov reveals just over four in ten workers at firms with 250 or more employees don’t know what their gender pay gap is

In April the UK become the first country in the world to require organisations with over 250 employees to report the difference in average earnings for men and women – the ‘gender pay gap’.

This week, a committee of MPs have called for the same legislation to extend to all companies with 50 employees or more.

Over four in ten workers still not aware of the gender pay gap at their firm

Yet new research from YouGov demonstrates that 44% of workers at organisations with 250 or more employees say their employer has still not made their gender pay gap clear to them, four months after the reporting deadline.

Just a third (36%) say their company has made clear to them what the gender pay gap is, and one in five (22%) say they don’t know.

Seven in ten believe the gender pay gap exists, yet just three in ten workers think it is an issue at their organisation

The vast majority of the Britons (71%) believe that the gender pay gap exists, while just one in six (16%) say it doesn’t. Men are considerably less likely to believe in the gender pay gap, with a quarter (23%) saying it does not exist compared to just 8% of women.

Young people are the most sceptical of the existence of the gender pay gap – 61% of 18 to 24 year olds believe it is real, compared to 81% of those aged 65 and above. A third (36%) of men aged 18 to 24 say it does not exist, compared to just one in nine (12%) women in the same age bracket.

Yet despite the vast majority of people believing the gender pay gap exists, only three in ten workers (30%) think it is an issue within their own firm. Half (50%) believe men and women are paid about the same at their organisation, while just 2% think the women at their firm earn more on average than the men.

Women are noticeably more likely to think men earn more at their firm, with a third (35%) saying so compared to only a quarter (25%) of men.

Are employers doing enough?

Employees at firms falling under existing reporting legislation are divided along gender lines as to whether they feel their employers are doing enough to close the gender pay gap.

A quarter of men (24%) think their employer is doing all they reasonably can to close it, while only half as many women think so (13%). By contrast, a third of women say that their company isn’t doing as much as it could to close the gap (29%) or isn’t doing anything at all (20%). Among men those figures are just 24% and 11% respectively.