Reset the Timeline on Gender Pay Gap Analysis and Reporting

Print First published: May 5th 2021; Last Updated: February 2nd 2022

Do you want to have a positive story to tell about your Gender Pay Gap in 2022? Then you need to get started on your Gender Pay Gap analysis now. Sooner, Better, More. Let's #ResetTheTimeline.

Everyone’s talking about how much the world of work has changed over the past year; a mass exodus from the office, increased flexibility, and the highs and lows of furlough... I’m sure you’ve read the articles. Let us forget the pandemic for a moment and turn back time to the 6 April 2017.

The UK Gender Pay Gap (GPG) reporting legislation had just come into force. With the first reports not due until 4 April the following year, employers had been given nearly a year to digest what they had to do and do it. The long runway up to the first deadline also led to an anxious feeling amongst employers across the UK.

No one wanted to be the first to submit; What if their competitors had outperformed them? What if the press singled them out to the British public for their “shocking Gender Pay Gap”? What if their current or future talent, investors, or customers read it? This anxiety led to the majority of employers submitting very close to the deadline in April 2018; treating it like a tax return - time consuming admin work, to be avoided until the last possible moment. 

Gender Pay Gap reporting was not off to a good start.

Since then, the legal requirement to report has been suspended (2020), extended (2021), and so, four years into the process the impact is not what we at Spktral had hoped.

Why now?

The pandemic is having a disproportionate impact on women due to care responsibilities, furlough, job losses, etc. Now, more than ever, organisations need to understand how the representation of women and men throughout their workforce is changing so that they can take the necessary steps to address and avert inequalities. Aside from this being the right thing to do, there are countless studies evidencing the benefits of a more diverse, inclusive

and equitable workplace. Gender Pay Gap analysis and reporting should not be suspended or delayed any longer.

So, let’s Reset the Timeline

Spktral, CityHive and other like-minded businesses and equality organisations, are on a mission to help you “Reset the Timeline” on Gender Pay Gap analysis and reporting. But what does that mean?

Organisations with 250 or more employees must submit their Gender Pay Gap report to the Government every year (30 March for public sector and 4 April for Private and third sector employers). Although this is the deadline, the data for this report is based on a snapshot date from the previous year. For example:

● Public sector: 31 March 2021 is your snapshot date for the report due by 30 March 2022.

● Private and third sector: 5 April 2021 is your snapshot date for the report due by 4 April 2022.

Most employers should have all the information they need to produce their GPG figures by the beginning of May. However, in previous years the majority

of organisations delayed publishing this data until very close to the deadline.

In 2018 less than2% of organisations submitted their report before the end of July. This figureis startlingly low and it is important to note that an organisation couldproduce their report earlier but wait until April to publish it. However, thisis a missed opportunity for organisations to be transparent about theirsituation, before implementing action plans and changing things that will speedup progress on improving representation in their workforce.


Do you want to havea positive story to tell about your Gender Pay Gap in 2022? Then we challengeyou to reset your timeline: start thinking about this today, get your analysisdone over the next couple of months with the aim to submit your report andpublish your narrative and action plan by 31st July.


Sooner - Better -More


We challenge you toReset the Timeline on Gender Pay Gap Analysis and Reporting and do it sooner,do it better, and start doing more.


1. Sooner

Start this now andspeed up progress on closing pay gaps. You should have all the information youneed to start your GPG analysis today. We challenge you to complete this by 31July.


2. Better

Improvethis whole process by shifting your focus away from just reporting and paygappercentages and towards outcomes, representation, action plans and progress.


3. More

Think bigger thanGender Pay Gaps - your stakeholders already are. Show your commitment to adiverse and inclusive workplace and look at what you need to do to startanalysing characteristics like Ethnicity, Disability and Sexuality.


How to do it better


Stop focusing onthe pay gap percentages. This is the aggregation of an entire organisation downto a single percentage - this is a very blunt instrument that does not explainthe gaps. Looking at the representation of each gender across the pay range ofthe organisation, and comparing this to the overall gender balance isdistinctly more powerful and shows you where you have potential gaps. This is amuch better approach to Gender analysis and it is critical when you move beyondGender to Ethnicity, Disability and Sexuality.


Focus on theoutcomes required to drive progress towards a fairer state - some good examplesare:

○ Reducing pay gapsby improving the representation of all types of people throughout the entirepay range of the organisation; and

○ Removing biasesfrom systems, processes and people.


The GEO nowrecommends that you include a supporting narrative and employer action plan toyour GPG report. The supporting narrative can run throughout the report toexplain your view on why gender pay gaps exist in your organisation and whatyou’ve done so far to change that. Publishing your action plan is a very publiccommitment to improving your gender pay gap. This is important, but remember ifyou are going to “talk-the-talk” in your pay gap report, make sure you“walk-the-walk” by making real improvements for your employees.


Bonus tip: Dateyour report on the year the snapshot data is based on. E.g. The report yousubmit by April 2022 should be called your 2021 Gender Pay Gap report.


How to do more

There is increasingsocial pressure to provide other types of pay gap analysis alongside GPGanalysis and it’s not going away. Indeed, many FTSE 100, 250 and 350organisations are releasing what they term as Diversity Reports where theyexamine Gender, Disability, Ethnicity and Sexuality in one document. However,it is very clear that while the intention is good, some organisations do nothave the appropriate expertise to carry out this process in a way that can helpthem drive real change.


Before organisationsrush to analyse their Ethnicity or other pay gaps a few things need to beconsidered: 


Communication,transparency and trust

To succeed incollecting data, you need clear communication and the right culture in place.This is necessary for legal reasons - GDPR states you must say why you need thedata and what you will use it for - but also to increase transparency andultimately build trust with your employees. Leaders who are getting this rightare the ones communicating with their employees and bringing them along ontheir journeys. If you don’t get this right, it’s unlikely they will give youthe data you need to accurately analyse your pay gaps.


Analysing not justreporting

There needs to be aparadigm shift from reporting to correctly analysing data. This may requireadditional expertise. Reporting numbers does nothing if it doesn’t form part ofa wider business strategy, analysis, or action plan.


Focus onrepresentation

Stop thinking aboutyour pay gap figures and start thinking about the representation of peoplethroughout your organisation. As you zoom in and out of the data looking atboth the broad and granular picture, you should also consider intersectionaldifferences – for example, the pay gap and representation of Chinese female vs Blackmale.

Join us and#ResetTheTimeline

We are a movementof leading businesses and equality groups, who all support the mission ofresetting the timeline on pay gap analysis and reporting. We would love you tojoin our movement! Do you need support with pay gap analysis and reporting? Getin touch.


About Spktral

Spktral are trustedpartners of City Hive and their mission is simple: to Empower Equal Futures.Spktral wants to make it as easy as possible for you to transform your HR andpayroll data into insightful pay gap analysis. This enables you to makeevidence-based people decisionsabout your most valuable asset – your people.Their focus is your pay gap reporting - specifically gender, ethnicity anddisability. You get access to their easy-to-use platform, flexible consultingwith pay gap specialists, and online resources, to help you throughout yourentire pay gap journey.


To find out more,ask a question, or book a free consultation, visit Spktral’s website or [email protected]


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