Five questions answered on the male/female pay gap

Women paid "significantly less".

A survey of 38,843 managers at the Chartered Management Institute found that women can expect to be paid significantly less than their male counterpart throughout their lifetime. We answer five questions of the survey’s findings.

 How big exactly is the pay gap between men and women?

Well, a man and woman working with an identical career path – starting as an executive role at 25 and rising up the career ladder until they are 60 – a man can expect to take home pre-tax totals of around £1,516,330, while a women can expect to take home pre-tax totals of £1,092,940.

That’s a lifetime earnings gap of £423,390 with the average yearly pay gap between men and women being £10,060.

Does this extend to bonuses, too?

Yes, according to the survey women receive less than half what men are awarded in bonuses. The average bonus for a male executive was £7,496, compared to £3,726 for a female executive.

How many executive women are there in the national workforce?

The survey found that there are 57 per cent of women in the executive workforce; at junior level there are 69 per cent but only 40 per cent of department heads are female and only 24 per cent are chief executives.

How have women been affected by recession job cuts?

More harshly than their male counterparts: between August 2011 and August 2012 4.3 per cent of female executives were made redundant, compared to 3.2 per cent of male executives. This is almost double since the last survey in 2011 when the figure stood at 2.2 percent.

This year’s survey found twice as many female directors were made redundant compared to male directors (7.4 per cent compared to 3.1 per cent).

Who is the Chartered Management institute and what did they have to say about the research findings?

CMI is a membership organisation dedicated to raising standards of management and leadership across all sectors of the UK commerce and industry. It is also the founder of the National Occupational Standards for Management and Leadership and sets the standards that others follow.

Ann Francke, CMI Chief Executive, said: “This lack of a strong talent pipeline has to change, and fast.  Allowing these types of gender inequalities to continue is precisely the kind of bad management that we need to stamp out.

“We need an immediate and collaborative approach to setting things straight. The Government should demand more transparency from companies on pay, naming and shaming organisations that are perpetuating inequality and celebrating those that achieve gender equality in the executive suite and the executive pay packet. The new plans to require companies to report on the number of women in senior positions are also welcome. Government should move ahead with plans to reform parental leave, which will remove one of the barriers that makes it impractical for women to play a greater a part in the workforce”

The gap widens. Photograph: Getty Images

Heidi Vella is a features writer for

Photo: Getty Images
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How can Britain become a nation of homeowners?

David Cameron must unlock the spirit of his postwar predecessors to get the housing market back on track. 

In the 1955 election, Anthony Eden described turning Britain into a “property-owning democracy” as his – and by extension, the Conservative Party’s – overarching mission.

60 years later, what’s changed? Then, as now, an Old Etonian sits in Downing Street. Then, as now, Labour are badly riven between left and right, with their last stay in government widely believed – by their activists at least – to have been a disappointment. Then as now, few commentators seriously believe the Tories will be out of power any time soon.

But as for a property-owning democracy? That’s going less well.

When Eden won in 1955, around a third of people owned their own homes. By the time the Conservative government gave way to Harold Wilson in 1964, 42 per cent of households were owner-occupiers.

That kicked off a long period – from the mid-50s right until the fall of the Berlin Wall – in which home ownership increased, before staying roughly flat at 70 per cent of the population from 1991 to 2001.

But over the course of the next decade, for the first time in over a hundred years, the proportion of owner-occupiers went to into reverse. Just 64 percent of households were owner-occupier in 2011. No-one seriously believes that number will have gone anywhere other than down by the time of the next census in 2021. Most troublingly, in London – which, for the most part, gives us a fairly accurate idea of what the demographics of Britain as a whole will be in 30 years’ time – more than half of households are now renters.

What’s gone wrong?

In short, property prices have shot out of reach of increasing numbers of people. The British housing market increasingly gets a failing grade at “Social Contract 101”: could someone, without a backstop of parental or family capital, entering the workforce today, working full-time, seriously hope to retire in 50 years in their own home with their mortgage paid off?

It’s useful to compare and contrast the policy levers of those two Old Etonians, Eden and Cameron. Cameron, so far, has favoured demand-side solutions: Help to Buy and the new Help to Buy ISA.

To take the second, newer of those two policy innovations first: the Help to Buy ISA. Does it work?

Well, if you are a pre-existing saver – you can’t use the Help to Buy ISA for another tax year. And you have to stop putting money into any existing ISAs. So anyone putting a little aside at the moment – not going to feel the benefit of a Help to Buy ISA.

And anyone solely reliant on a Help to Buy ISA – the most you can benefit from, if you are single, it is an extra three grand from the government. This is not going to shift any houses any time soon.

What it is is a bung for the only working-age demographic to have done well out of the Coalition: dual-earner couples with no children earning above average income.

What about Help to Buy itself? At the margins, Help to Buy is helping some people achieve completions – while driving up the big disincentive to home ownership in the shape of prices – and creating sub-prime style risks for the taxpayer in future.

Eden, in contrast, preferred supply-side policies: his government, like every peacetime government from Baldwin until Thatcher’s it was a housebuilding government.

Why are house prices so high? Because there aren’t enough of them. The sector is over-regulated, underprovided, there isn’t enough housing either for social lets or for buyers. And until today’s Conservatives rediscover the spirit of Eden, that is unlikely to change.

I was at a Conservative party fringe (I was on the far left, both in terms of seating and politics).This is what I said, minus the ums, the ahs, and the moment my screensaver kicked in.

Stephen Bush is editor of the Staggers, the New Statesman’s political blog.