The Equal Pay act was introduced in 1970, preventing men and women being favoured in terms of their pay and working conditions. However, it was not until October 2010 in which the Equality Act was introduced. The equality act concentrates on the responsibilities of the employer and ensures consistency in the workplace (acas, The Equality Act 2010- Guidance for employees) and also prevents “direct discrimination against an individual because others think they possess a particular protected characteristic” (acas, The Equality Act 2010- Guidance for employees) for example, sex.
While the earnings gap has narrowed over the years, it is still seen that women are payed significantly less than men. In 1960 for every $1 a man made the women averagely only made 61 cents, whereas in 2010 the women would now earn 78 cents for every dollar (The Wall Street Journal, Sep 2014). It is believed that women are often payed less due to the fact that the majority are often seen to be in part time jobs due to a woman’s role as a mother or a career, although this has lessened in recent years, the amount of women in full-time year-round jobs is still significantly less than that for men. Female managers are now paid an average £31,895 per year, compared with £42,441 for men doing the same job, according to the Chartered Management Institute (BBC News, Aug 2011).
The unequal pay gap between men and women is starting to damage UK businesses, even though women’s salaries have increased by 2.4% in comparison to 2.1% for male colleagues (BBC News, Aug 2011), UK female executives are still payed less than the UK average for many lines of work. This difference in pays is damaging the reputation of very large UK and multinational businesses when it is made public that women are working in unfair work practices. The difference puts extra pressure on managers and employees to try ensure that they are being effective and efficient in relation to treating their employees fairly.
In the UK, 16% of board members are women and although this is above the EU average of 13.7% (The Guardian, Nov 2012).This could be evidence of women being unfairly treated in the workforce,s it shows that managers are reluctant to promote women into the more senior roles therefore giving an impression of a ‘glass ceiling’. The average chief executive of a leading British company remains a 53-year-old male with a background in finance, according to the annual Robert Half CEO tracker (The Independent, May 2013). Another reason for the ‘glass ceiling’ on women’s jobs is again the reluctancy of managers to