- More workers in the U.K. (77%) are aware of the gender pay gap disparity than in the U.S. (73%), according to a recent study by Beqom. Beqom commissioned the survey of 1,600 employees to "uncover differences between U.S. and U.K. employee perceptions" about the gender pay gap, according to Beqom co-founder and CMO Tanya Jansen. Unlike in the U.S., all U.K. companies with over 250 employees are required to publish their gender pay gap figures annually, following new guidance passed in 2017.
- Nearly a third of U.K. workers said their employer has announced a committment to solving the pay gap, while just 13% of U.S. workers said the same of their employers. Eighteen percent of U.K. respondents said their companies had adjusted women's salaries. Fifteen of U.S. workers reported their employers had done so.
- Overall, 70% of women said they would be more willing to take a job at a company that discloses gender pay gap information annually.
It may seem obvious that employers making strides to close the gender pay gap would want to share their pay data with employees and, possibly, the general public. Workers, especially younger ones, want their employers to address social issues, according to a 2018 MetLife Poll. But U.S. employers will want to consider carefully how they plan to share the findings of a pay audit, attorneys recommended at the National Employment Law Institute's 42nd annual Employment Law Update in Washington, D.C. in 2018.
Some employers may discover significant gaps in their compensation after conducting a pay audit. They may choose to adjust too-low salaries during an upcoming review process to avoid raising red flags, the attorneys said. Some employers, under fire for unequal pay, will find that making adjustments boosts their image. When making the adjustments, someone from company leadership should make a statement that has been reviewed by counsel, the attorneys said.
Still, it's worth noting the recent research that shows employees are excited to work for companies that commit to corporate social responsibility (CSR). As the Beqom study pointed out, however, employers must be intent upon communicating with workers about such initiatives. In fact, more than half of business leaders in a Washington State University survey said they have a CSR program, but only 18% of employees said they were aware of such programs.