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There’s been a lot in the news recently about publishing data on male pay versus female pay – do I have to do this?

For most South West SMEs, at the moment, no you don’t have to publish data under the ‘Gender Pay Gap Reporting’ rules. However, even if you run a small business, please don’t be complacent about the way you set pay rates – there is still potential for expensive claims if you get this wrong.

The biggest employers in the South West will know that if you employ 250 or more people, you are obliged to publish annual data on the gender pay gaps within the workforce.

If caught by the rules, each organisation’s data has to be uploaded to a Government website.  Our specialist team can help with this reporting.

Employers of any size should bear in mind that pay information can already be used as evidence to support legal claims for Equal Pay – an entirely separate piece of law (this is often confused).

The Equality Act 2010 implements the principle in the UK that men and women should receive “equal pay for equal work or work of equal value”. We have recently seen a further judgement in a multi party claim involving Asda allowing claimants in their retail stores to compare themselves (for equal pay purposes) with higher paid men who work in the supermarket giant’s distribution centres, but it is the same legal principle whether you run Asda, or one local shop.

With mandatory reporting raising the profile of pay differentials, all employers should consider reviewing the methods they use to set pay rates in their business.

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