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Gender pay gap is at its narrowest since records began

The gender pay gap has fallen below 10 per cent for the first time since comparable records began. According to figures recently released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the gender pay gap for full-time employees fell to 9.6 per cent from 10.5 per cent in 2011.

Analysts said one reason for the gap's shrinkage was that women's full-time earnings have been rising more quickly than men's. Over the 12 months to April, women's average hourly earnings grew by 2.2 per cent to £12 while men's grew by 1.1 per cent to £13.27.

Others pointed to cultural changes in the workplace, more enlightened attitudes in management, and a greater number of women breaking through the ranks. While many drew encouragement from the figures, commentators also said that at the current rate men and women wouldn't achieve equal pay until 2040.

Employers must give men and women equal terms and conditions in their employment contract if they are employed to do the same or broadly similar work, work of equal value, or work rated as equivalent under a job evaluation study.

Acas can visit organisations to help them understand what needs to be done to address a range of issues related to Equal pay and can work with them to develop practical solutions. Acas also runs training events on Flexible working that look in depth at areas associated with work and families.

Visit the Acas Training and Business Solutions area for more information.

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