Men and women doing equal work and work rated as of equal value are entitled to equal pay. Employers may wish to carry out a pay audit to ensure that men and women are getting equal pay according to the Equality Act 2010.
Employers must give men and women equal treatment in the terms and conditions of their employment contract if they are employed on:
- 'like work' - work that is the same or broadly similar
- work rated as equivalent under a job evaluation study (See: Recruitment and management)
- work found to be of equal value
A woman is employed on 'like work' with a man if her work is of the same or a broadly similar nature. It is for the employer to show that there is a genuine reason for any difference in pay, which is not based on the sex of an individual.
Employees are also entitled to know how their pay is made up. For example, if there is a bonus system, everyone should know how to earn bonuses and how they are calculated.
Questions and answers
What can I do if I feel I am being discriminated against?
If you can not resolve the problem informally, you may complain to an employment tribunal under the Equality Act 2010 while still working in the job or up to six months after leaving the employment to which your claim relates. From 29th July 2013 all Employment Tribunals and Employment Appeal Tribunals will be liable to pay a fee or an application for fee remission. Further information is available from Ministry of Justice - Employment Tribunal guidance.
Can an employer stop employees from discussing pay?
The Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful to prevent employees from having discussions to establish if there are differences in pay. An employer can require their employees to keep pay rates confidential from people outside of the workplace.
Who can be a comparator for equal pay?
A comparator must be an employee of the opposite sex working for the same employer, doing like work of equal value. However, an employer may defend a claim if they show the reason for the difference is due to a genuine factor and not based on the sex of the employee.
Payment and reward systems - Acas business solutions
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