Countdown on until company gender pay gaps published 


In just over a month Australians will finally see how men and women are paid in the workplace, with the publication of the first gender pay gaps report.


On 27 February, the Workplace Gender Equality Agency will publish the gender pay gaps for every Australian employer with 100 or more employees, making business accountable over pay disparity.

Under legislation passed last year, companies with more than 100 staff are required to abide by new gender pay gap reporting requirements which start in February.

Read more: Companies with gender pay gaps on notice

Previously, the difference in pay between males and females was only known at an industry level, but now the pay gap at individual businesses will be published.

"For the first time we will see... what's happening in individual businesses across Australia," Minister for Women Katy Gallagher said.

Companies, not-for-profit organisations and other employers with more than 100 staff have been required to report to the WGEA each year with details of their performance against six gender benchmarks.

These include the gender split at each level of the corporate hierarchy as well as the gender pay gap across the outfit. Other benchmarks include the availability of flexible working arrangements and other measures to support staff with family or caring responsibilities, as well as other steps to tackle issues of gender inequality.

Employer gender pay gaps will be available on individual employer pages on WGEA’s Data Explorer

The latest data shows the average weekly gap for ordinary full-time earnings is around 13 per cent. While it is the lowest level ever, the annual difference over the course of a year is more than $26,000, or 21.7 per cent.

WGEA CEO, Mary Wooldridge, said the new legislation is a “clear message from the government that this is a priority and that gender equality is not just a ‘nice to have’”. Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald, Wooldridge said: “What it requires with transparency and accountability around performance is [that] companies have that light shone on their performance, but also an opportunity then to articulate what they’re doing about it.”

Speaking on ABC radio, Gallager said the gender pay gap was "not reducing fast enough" as she commented on new reporting requirements for businesses.

 “What we're trying to do with this change that the parliament passed is make sure that companies are aware of what their gender pay gap is, and that they're taking steps to reduce it because basically, it's just not fair. We want women to get a fair crack at jobs and opportunities. And at the moment, there's a big gender pay gap. Even though it's closing, it's not closing fast enough.”

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