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Gender pay gap: what you need to know

06 April 2017

The Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017 come into force today (6 April 2017).

Employers with 250 or more employees will now be under a duty to publish a gender pay gap report by 4 April 2018. Thereafter, an annual report will have to be published.

The report must be accessible to all employees and the public, for example on the employer’s website, and must remain available for at least three years from the date of publication.

Under the regulations, affected employers must report on:

  1. the difference between men’s and women’s average hourly pay;
  2. the difference between men’s and women’s average bonus pay;
  3. the proportions of male and female employees who received bonus pay; and
  4. the proportions of male and female employees in each of four quartile pay bands.

The difference between the rates of pay should be expressed as a percentage.

For the purpose of the regulations, ordinary pay includes:

  • basic pay
  • pay for piecework
  • pay for leave
  • shift premium pay

It does not include overtime or payments made in lieu of leave. Remuneration in the form of money, vouchers and securities, as well as remuneration that relates to profit sharing or commissions, will have to be included in calculations of bonus pay.

An employee’s hourly rate of pay will be calculated in reference to the employee’s weekly working hours. If an employee works hours that are the same from week-to-week, the weekly working hours are those specified in the contract of employment. Where an employee’s hours vary every week, their weekly working hours are to be calculated as an average of their total working hours over a 12-week reference period.

Guidance on how to comply with gender pay gap reporting was made available by the government and conciliation service Acas in January 2017. The detailed guidance can be downloaded  here.

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