Back in March 2022, during International Women’s Day, the UK government announced initiatives to improve salary transparency to bridge the gender pay gap. This includes a pay transparency scheme to last between six to 12 months, where organisations are encouraged to display salaries in their job adverts. You may wonder – why is this necessary.
The topic of salary transparency has become increasingly relevant, as more workers demand transparency to combat pay inequality. Many have called for more employers to commit to salary transparency – on job vacancies as well as among their current employees. Although encouragement for salary transparency is happening across the UK, a report by Adzuna in November 2022 shows that salary transparency in job adverts has reached the lowest point in the last six years – with only 60% of job adverts disclosing salaries, down from 64% in 2021.
Employees are now aware that there are gaps in pay based on various discriminating factors. Some companies are known to have pay secrecy clauses in place, with TUC reporting in 2020 that 18% of workers have been instructed to not discuss their pay with their colleagues. Having these policies in place significantly prevents workers from challenging unfair pay, discrimination and disproportionate pay ratios.
The Impact of Salary Transparency on Job Adverts
Disclosing salaries in job adverts can go a long way in the pursuit of equality in the workplace. Here are some topics and issues within the discourse of workplace equality that can be impacted positively by salary transparency.
Gender Pay Gap
The gender pay gap, among other gaps in salaries, has been an ongoing topic of discourse that has had many initiatives brought forth to combat it. Even with the existing measures, the gender pay gap continues to be an issue – with the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) reporting in April 2022 that the gender pay gap for full-time employees was 8.3%, up from the previous year which was 7.7%. However, it should be noted that it is still lower than pre-pandemic numbers with 9% reported in 2019.
It was mentioned before that the number of UK job adverts disclosing salaries has dropped in 2022. Although not explicitly mentioned, it can be assumed that this may have contributed to the increase in the gender pay gap from 2021 to 2022. This is due to the acknowledgement that the increase in salary transparency over the years has directly affected the lowering of the gender pay gap.
Organisations that promote salary transparency are also promoting equality. Being an employer that champions equality can attract a wider pool of candidates as they will view the employer as more trustworthy and open to minority backgrounds.
In the long run, being transparent about salaries can benefit companies as employees are more likely to stay employed and attract new talent. With employees feeling valued and engaged, productivity is likely to increase as they feel comfortable in their workplace.
Streamlined and Effective Hiring Process
Tedious and lengthy hiring processes often cause issues with recruiting the best talents. Many candidates will turn away from opportunities with long recruitment processes due to various reasons – such as accepting other offers that come earlier or viewing the company as inefficient.
By having salaries displayed on job ads, the time required for salary negotiation can be lowered or even removed. People can then focus on other important things for the recruitment process – such as skills, experience and the alignment of values between the candidate and the organisation. Being straightforward about what the company is looking for and offer can greatly increase efficacy and save time for all parties involved.
The discussion above shows just how important and significant salary transparency on job adverts can be in the recruitment process and for the workplace at large. Being transparent on salaries can be seen as a company’s efforts towards equality, which is an issue that many have been tackling over the years.