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7 November 2012

Five questions answered on the male/female pay gap

Women paid "significantly less".

By Heidi Vella

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?

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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”