Major UK retailers New Look and John Lewis have published double-digit gender pay reports, as new government rules take effect.
Both retailers have published their results in advance of the deadline in April. New government rules state that any company employing more than 250 people must publish mean and median gender pay gaps.
Results for New Look revealed that in April 2017, the mean gender pay gap sat at 30%, which is a drop from the previous year of 31.3%. The fashion retailers store employee’s account for 82% of its workforce, with 91% of them being female. New Look says that their female workforce has had an impact on the pay gap, which means there are a larger number of women in lower paid positions.
Taking the data for store staff only would see the mean gender pay gap drop dramatically to 7.8%.
New Look have introduced a range of ideas to address the difference, such as a ‘Junior Board’ which has a largely female membership, and a ‘Buddy to Boss’ initiative which supports employees to progress in their career.
Elsewhere, John Lewis has announced a 13.9% mean pay gap, with 17.4% in the UK and 16.4% in the retail sector. According to the company, this is due to the number of women in senior roles with 40% of the highest paid leadership roles being women, compared to 61% of its junior workers.
John Lewis’ pay ranges vary by job function, which suggests another influence on the pay gap data. It shows that 80% of personnel roles are made up of women, compared to 35% in IT roles.
The retailer has vowed to address the gender pay by putting more focus on why a smaller number of female employees progress into senior roles. They have announced a commitment that gives all employees the chance to find out and apply for new career opportunities as well as support for interviews by providing mentoring and coaching.
The law states that women are entitled to receive exactly the same pay for doing the same job as a man. Where this is not the case, organisations are required to remedy this.
As the deadline for companies to publish their reports draws closer, just over 1,100 out of around 9,000 have published their findings. This means that the vast majority of companies are expected to publish their gender pay information over the next couple of months in time for the April deadline.