‘Women less likely to be compensated for stepping up during Covid’

A survey by ADP Research Institute finds women in the UK were more likely to take on extra responsibilities at work during Covid, but less likely to be compensated for doing so.

stressed women

 

Women are being left behind when it comes to being rewarded financially for taking on new roles or additional responsibilities to fill gaps left by Covid-related job losses, according to a new report.

People at Work 2021: A Global Workforce View, a survey of more than 32,000 workers in 17 countries by the ADP® Research Institute, found 68% of workers said they received a pay rise or bonus for doing stepping up. However, across all regions women were less likely than men to receive one, with only around half of women in Europe, North America and Latin America being rewarded financially for making these changes, compared to around three in five men. In the UK, 76% of men received a pay rise or bonus for taking on new roles and extra responsibilities, compared to 68% of women.

The study found that globally, men and women were just as likely to have taken on additional responsibilities due to Covid-related job losses in their organisations (47% of men and 46% of women said so), and/or to have taken on a new role for the same reason (28% for both). The UK average is far lower, with 29% of women and 27% of men more likely to have taken on additional responsibilities due to Covid-related job losses in their organisations.

Only half of female employees in the UK believe that their employer is doing enough to close the pay gap and address diversity. Additionally, just over a third of British women do not believe there is pay equality in their organisation, with 52% of UK employees reporting that “my company states there is pay equality, but I haven’t seen it”.

Jeff Phipps, Managing Director of ADP UK, said: “Unfortunately, the gender pay gap appears to still be ingrained in workplaces across the UK, and has potentially been exacerbated by the pandemic. Employees have been stepping up to support their employers in the face of job cuts or restructuring of operations, yet women are not being rewarded as favourably as men for taking on additional responsibilities.”

“The additional burden of unpaid work has continued to fall mainly on women during the pandemic, and this has taken a toll. I fear that some flexible working models, despite being well intended, could create increased disparity. Companies may shrug their shoulders and say it’s not their job to fix societal issues, or instead, they could choose to shine a light on the issue and play a role in changing behaviours and policies to level the playing field and create a more equitable future.”

The research comes as a global YouGov survey found young people and women have taken the hardest psychological and financial hit from the pandemic, with 55% of women surveyed in the UK saying their professional life was more stressful as a result compared to 36% of men. A Resolution Foundation report out today finds the number of women, particularly working mums, who are working increased during the pandemic while the number of older workers and young men decreased.



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