1 February 2018
Sexual harassment and gender pay gap reporting in the spotlight
Businesses must step up to prevent sexual harassment and improve gender diversity – this includes acting now on gender pay gap reporting obligations.
Revelations of sexual harassment dominated the headlines last week. CBI Director-General Carolyn Fairbairn, described the news as a wake-up call for businesses to ensure that they’re doing all they can to prevent workplace sexual harassment. The CBI also discussed this important issue in parliament this week, with Managing Director, Neil Carberry, giving evidence to the Women & Equalities Select Committee. Neil put forward recommendations for how employers can help to improve people’s understanding of their rights and how the government can make the law and its enforcement more effective.
The gender pay gap also continues to be in the media spotlight. The 4 April deadline for companies required to publish their gender pay gap is fast approaching. The CBI is aware that government is monitoring whether companies have yet registered with the online portal, as well as whether firms have published their data. To minimise the risk of public claims that business isn’t taking its reporting responsibilities seriously, CBI advises firms to register with the portal immediately to show intent to publish data on time.
To date, just 752 employers out of around 9,000 have published their data. It is crucial that employers collect, analyse and report their gender pay data accurately and on time. Done well, this will help employers to better to understand why gaps exists and what steps will be effective in improving gender diversity.
There are a number of reasons why an employer may not have reported yet. These include waiting to scrutinise their report and action plan at board-level, or because they plan to either report in their annual accounts or alongside a wider diversity and inclusion campaign.
Doing so will give employers time to ensure that they report their gender pay gap accurately and at a time which suits their business without suffering adverse reputational cost.