Leadership, Total Rewards, Total Well-Being
Pay Equity: A Challenging, but Essential Issue
Pay equity has been a problem in the United States since the 1800’s, when employers first started discriminating against races and genders. Today, research shows:
- Women on average make 79 cents for every dollar men get
- Black women make 63 cents for every dollar white men are paid
- Black women make 17 cents less per hour than white women.
This issue is affecting employees of all kinds and at all levels. One example is the US Women’s soccer team, who has made headlines for their fight to achieve equal pay. At a recent pay equity symposium, the team’s Co-Captain Megan Rapinoe discussed the importance of bringing attention to the issue, even if it can be awkward. “This ongoing conversation helps break down stereotypes,” she said. “To constantly open that space up and make it a comfortable environment for people to talk about pay, I believe, is important.”
So what can employers do?
The best thing to do is to assess your company’s pay system to make sure it’s as fair and equal as possible. One way to do this is to create a database of all employees and their salary, then add information like their job level, certifications, and experience. This can help to spot biases in the system. Then, the gaps must be fixed. Companies can do this by adjusting salaries, setting clearer pay guidelines for managers, and re-assessing the pay system regularly.
While it may feel easier said than done, correcting pay inequities is crucial to a company’s success. It energizes employees and makes them feel valued, helping to create an overall healthier workplace. It may be tedious, but correcting pay gaps now will benefit your company long-term. If you’re interested in getting a pay equity study done, contact Exude today.