Recruitment agency totaljobs set out to discover if female employees in general had lower salary expectations and what can be done to overcome this.
Totaljobs surveyed 4,700 jobseekers and 145 employers. Totaljobs’ research shows nearly a quarter (23 per cent) of women believe men are paid more for carrying out the same job. 58 per cent of men but only 44 per cent of women say that men and women receive equal pay, suggesting that a majority of working women feel salaries aren’t fair. In particular, taking time out for parental leave was seen as a career killer, with one in 10 women attributing their absence from the workplace as the reason behind a missed pay rise or promotion. 16 per cent feel their pay has never recovered.
24 per cent of men and 29 per cent of women say they don’t believe their company actively promotes equality in the workplace regardless of age, gender and ethnicity.
Looking at a UK average across all roles, levels, industries and regions, totaljobs’ research found women have typically lower expectations than men when it comes to salary, anticipating £25,468 per annum compared to £32,030 for men – a difference of £6,562. Similarly, when applying for a new role, women typically expect a pay rise of £3,241 on average compared to £4,107 for men - a difference of £866.
Despite the fact that equal numbers of men and women received pay rises in their current role (44 per cent of men and 43 per cent of women), the research found men received an average pay rise of £1,764 compared to £1,377 for women in the past twelve months, a difference of £387.
On the question of whether they asked for a pay rise, 9 per cent of men and 8 per cent of women said they asked for it directly and were given it, showing that women are just as likely to ask, yet are likely to receive less. 75 per cent of women don’t feel comfortable asking for a pay rise in the first place, whereas 59 per cent of men do. And across all employees, the majority were granted a salary increase because everyone was given a pay rise (31 per cent), in other words, without asking.
Of those awarded a bonus in the last 12 months, men received an average of £2,059 compared to £1,128 for women - a difference of £931. Almost a third (31 per cent) of women claim they don’t know how their current company makes decisions with regards to its bonus scheme.
Totaljobs’ research also found that one in five employers (20 per cent) are either unsure or unconfident that salaries are equal across the genders. Surprisingly, over half (51 per cent) of the employers questioned were unaware that gender pay gap reporting is in the offing, and more than half of employers (58 per cent) said that their salary information across roles and gender is not readily available to employees on request. If that is the case, those employers are going to find gender pay gap reporting hard going.