The publication of gender pay gap data for businesses with 250+ employees has focused attention on what businesses can and should be doing to close that gap. Government Equalities Office has published some guidance on what steps have been proven to be effective. It makes for interesting reading.
A point that jumps out is that internal training (staff training on diversity and unconscious bias, and leadership training/development programmes for women) isn't enough to improve female representation at senior levels. What does seem to make a difference is greater transparency and standardisation of recruitment, promotion and pay-setting processes. This chimes with our experience: treating gender inequality as a training issue rather than taking practical steps to address discrepancies tends to come up short.
The guidance will be updated regularly as more data comes to light, so organisations looking to achieve best practice (whether or not they are obliged to report their own gender pay gaps) should keep a careful eye on it.
Employers have asked us which actions are likely to improve recruitment and progression of women and reduce the gender pay gap. This guidance summarises approaches that have been shown to work and those which need more evidence before they can be recommended as widespread approaches. This will help employers create more effective action plans.