BusinessPeople In BusinessSalary poll reveals gender bias

Salary poll reveals gender bias

The Equal Opportunities Commission has urged firms to ensure they do not discriminate after the most comprehensive survey of UK accountants' salaries revealed the pay gap between men and women at the top of the profession is more than twice the national average.

Link: 2003 salary survey in full

Male partners in accountancy firms earn on average 43% more than female partners, found the survey of more than 5,200 accountants by Accountancy Age and recruitment consultant Robert Half Finance and Accounting.

The most recent figures from the government’s new earnings survey show that the average gender pay gap is 19% among UK workers and 30% among managers. However, the pay gap between partners – male partners earn £58,349 a year on average, while females earn just £40,813 – is nearly half as much again.

The disparity continues among financial directors. With average annual earnings of £52,284, male finance directors earn an average of 20% more than female FDs. The gender pay gap among auditors is 11% on average, among tax specialists it is 19% and among credit controllers and finance managers it is 18%.

An Equal Opportunities Commission spokesperson said: ‘The banking and finance sector has one of the biggest gaps between the average pay of men and women, so these figures are not surprising.

‘It’s outrageous that women often find their work is undervalued compared to their male colleagues. The EOC urges accountancy firms to review their pay systems to make sure they are not discriminating against groups of their employees where it matters – in their pay packet.’

The results follow last week’s Employment Tribunal appeal victory by City analyst Louise Barton, who accused her former employer Investec Henderson Crosthwaite Securities Limited of sex discrimination in bonus allocation.

She claimed her remuneration and bonus were lower than those of her male colleagues.

Under new rules that took effect this week, anyone who believes they are being paid less than a colleague doing the same job as them, or a job worth the same as theirs, will be able to use the new pay questionnaire to find out how their pay compares.

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