Gender discrimination has a long history across cultures and national boundaries. Discrimination in pay structures are a problem gauging women workers across the globe that needs to be addressed. Despite activism about equal pay rights for women, there exists a substantial gap in pay structures of men and women. On an average most women get paid at a depressing amount of 50% less than that of men. Some have argued that discrimination has nothing to do with the average difference in pay structure between men and women. It is more often individual career choices that women make—juggling family and work life. While it is true that these factors do play an important role in shaping the salary structure—there’s more to add about the concept of equal work and equal pay.
Studies have found that hours of work, occupation and economic sector helps one understand these gaps in pay structures between male and female employees.
It might come as a surprise, but even in today’s job scenario, gender differences still exist. Even while women tend to occupy much senior positions in the corporate sector, their pay packages are comparatively lower than that of their male counterparts.
What the Management Can Do?
In terms of equal pay and equal rights at workplace, the management can end up taking some stances to blur the lines between disparities at work based on gender.
- Experience of the Candidate
Experience may, but does not always justify a difference in pay. For example, in one equal pay claim, a female engineer compared herself to a male engineer. She had 3 years’ of work experience compared to 13 years’ of work experience of the latter; but the management that this made no material difference to the work they performed.
As an employer, you have to take into consideration skill set and the efficiency of the candidate. A female employee can be far more efficient that his or her male counterpart. Ensure that efficiency of a candidate is taken into consideration by the management while assigning responsibilities.
- Be Clear as to What People Do
As an employer, be clear as to what people do against the job description that they are assigned. Do not discriminate against job titles and keep job descriptions standardized. This might seem a lot of effort at the initial level but having clear job descriptions entitled for each employee – males and females ensure that there is no discrimination at all.
- Is your Pay System Creating any Discrimination?
This is something that you need to consider strictly as an employer. Is there is stark discrimination against your employees in terms of pay package or remuneration. How many different components in your pay structure do you have? If there is too many of them then you need to harmonize your pay structure.
- Consider if there is a Central Overview as to What People Get Paid
As an employer it is important for you to consider if there is a central overview as to what people get paid. Ensure that there is no discrimination in terms of what female employees get paid or what male employees get paid. Equality at workplace matters to a great extent.
The Final Words
Employers must understand that gender equality at workplace is very much essential and it ensures a lot of benefits for the corporate as well. The World Economic Forum has found a strong correlation between a country’s competitiveness and how it uses its female talent pool. It states “…empowering women means a more efficient use of a nation’s human talent endowment and… reducing gender inequality enhances productivity and economic growth. Over time, therefore, a nation’s competitiveness depends, among other things, on whether and how it educates and utilizes its female talent.”