Beyond the gender pay gap: 3 more ‘gaps’ you need to know


By now, we all understand the importance of the gender pay gap, but what about the other ‘gaps’ in the workplace? The imbalances that need redressing if everyone is to have an equal shot of success?

Here are three that should definitely be on your radar:


The ethnicity pay gap

A report by The Resolution Foundation earlier in the year found that black and ethnic minority employees are losing out on £3.2bn a year, with – for instance – black women graduates earning on average £1.56 less per hour than white women graduates.

The government has published a consultation document asking whether there should be ‘ethnicity pay reporting’, as there was for gender pay. ITN is one of the few companies that has done this voluntarily; their report showed BAME employees are paid 21 per cent less per hour than their white counterparts.

The Chartered Management Institute argues that education within organisations is urgently needed, calling on the government to demand that any organisation that would be required to report on ethnicity pay, to also publish plans on how line managers will deliver diversity training.

This comes after their survey of 950 managers found that 1 in 4 had never received training on how to manage diversity and inclusion, and only 52% of junior managers felt ‘very confident’ in challenging discriminatory language in the workplace.


The gender commuter gap

Analysis of data from the Office for National Statistics has found that men tend to commute further to work, which may be one contributing factor to the gender pay gap.

Two-thirds of commutes that last longer than an hour are undertaken by men, while more than half of commutes lasting less than 15 minutes are taken by women.

Research carried out by the Institute of Fiscal studies found the disparities between men and women’s commutes widen after the birth of the first child, as women are more likely to be responsible for caring for children, and may need to be closer to home.

The knock-on effect, the research concluded, is that women have a smaller pool of jobs to choose from, which could impact their ability to find work that matches their skillset. Similarly, if employers know they face less competition from other employers when hiring mothers (because mothers have fewer jobs to choose from), they may feel more able to offer lower wages.


The gender ‘perk’ gap

New research has found that companies in Ireland may be tailoring the employee bonuses they offer, on the basis of gender.

The survey, carried out by Aviva, found that the most widely offered perk was pension contributions – 49% of men were offered these, in comparison to just 39% of women. When it came to flexible working hours, however, 35% of women were offered this benefit, in comparison to just 27% of men.

Men were also 50% more likely to be offered membership of a bonus scheme, however, female respondents were significantly more likely to prioritise flexitime over bonus schemes.

Commenting on the research, Aviva’s Karen Gallacher said, “There’s a very real and obvious gender divide when it comes to employee benefits… the only area it seems in which women get more in terms of benefits is around flexible working hours.”



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