15 July, 2021
On 13 July 2021, the Irish government introduced gender pay gap reporting as a legal requirement in Ireland.
Gender pay gap is, at its simplest, the difference between the average wages of men and women (regardless of their seniority).
For example, if the majority of lower-paid roles in an organisation are filled by women and the higher paid roles are filled by men, there will be a gender pay gap. This is not to be confused with equal pay which (while connected) is a different issue. Equal pay is about ensuring men and women are paid the same for performing work of equal value.
Even if an employer does not have an equal pay issue, a gender pay gap may still exist.
In order to prepare employers need to:
The gender pay gap in Ireland was 14.4% in 2017 (* based on data published by the OECD-Eurostat).
This ranks slightly ahead of the OECD average of 16%.
Ireland compares favourably with the UK (17%), US (18%) and Canada (18%). Taking action to close this gap is now a priority.
Employers are required to submit the information:
It is now mandatory for employers to report the pay gap between male and female employees in the following areas:
Whilst it is imperative to accurately report the numbers, it is equally as important to:
Planning an effective communications strategy and building a carefully thought out message can have a powerful impact for organisations, both with their existing employees and in the marketplace.
Employers will need to ensure that they comply with the relevant data protection provisions when reporting (which can also be done with legal privilege).
There are several measures to tackle non-compliance and organisations may be forced to comply by an order from the Circuit Court or Workplace Relations Commission.
When dealt with correctly, gender pay gap reporting can help organisations:
Gender pay gap reporting will be a challenge for Irish employers, particularly in the first years of its implementation. Many expect that the first reporting results will not necessarily be positive for a large number of companies. However, it will provide them with an opportunity to review policies and strategies, consider the challenges faced and actions required to ensure that the gap closes in the coming years.
Calculate and review your gender pay gap using our specially designed gender pay gap data analytics tool.
Prepare your organisation for reporting the gender pay gap (i.e., stress testing to identify trends and additional voluntary disclosures you may wish to make, which can be subject to legal privilege).
Develop your internal and external communications strategy.
Assist you to plan how to close the gender pay gap and to improve the diversity and inclusion strategy of your organisation.