MEDIA RELEASE Tuesday 24 July 2018
Gender pay equity: ASX 100 companies rated
A new report has found that over a quarter of ASX100 companies that are required to make disclosures to the Australian government’s Workplace Gender Equality Agency do not have a remuneration policy that explicitly covers gender pay equity.
The report ‘Gender pay equity and Australian listed companies’ by the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) and CAER and supported by Future Super, ranks ASX 100 companies on their measures in place to identify and address gender-based pay discrimination.
It is intended to equip Australian institutional investors with a solid comparative basis upon which to ramp up their efforts to eliminate the gender pay gap.
Report findings include:
- 26% of disclosing* companies do not have a remuneration policy that covers gender pay equity.
- 85% of disclosing* companies do not have a remuneration policy that covers pay scale transparency.
- 76% of the ASX100 listed companies do not have a CEO or board member signed onto the Gender Pay Equity Pledge.
- 95% of disclosing* companies have conducted a payroll analysis to determine if there are any remuneration gaps between women and men.
- 80% of companies have taken actions as a result of their gender remuneration gap analysis.
- Leaders: Cochlear, BT Investment Group, BHP Billiton, ASX Limited and Bank of Queensland all highlighted best practice examples of addressing gender pay equity that went beyond mandatory WGEA disclosures in their WGEA disclosure responses.
- Laggards: James Hardie Industries, Qube Holdings, Ramsay Health Care and TPG Telecom are the only companies out of the 91 disclosing companies that have not conducted a gender pay gap analysis.
- Companies that took no action after conducting a gender pay gap analysis: Amcor, Ansell, Brambles, BT Investment Management, Cimic Group, CSL, Evolution Mining, Goodman Group, Harvey Norman Holdings, JB Hi-Fi, Medibank Private, Sydney Airport, Xero Limited
*Based on Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) rules, nine of the 100 ASX listed companies examined for this report were not required to disclose information.
ACCR’s Executive Director Brynn O’Brien said: “It is well and truly time for Australian companies to take decisive action on pay equity. While this report demonstrates a reasonable level of policy uptake, the resistance of companies to the most meaningful types of disclosures — transparency about the actual gender pay gap in their workforce and disclosure of pay scales — is holding Australian women back.
“Further, inaction on pay equity cannot be excused by reliance on salaries being set by awards or industrial agreements.
“The Australian investment community should now look beyond ‘women on boards’ and CEO salaries and enforce gender pay equity across the entire workforce of companies in which they invest.
CAER’s Research Project Manager Nina Haysler said: “The bar for reporting requirements related to Australian employees and gender pay equity is minimal under the WGEA reporting standards. Companies are not even required to publicly publish a quantitative figure demonstrating their gender pay gap. In contrast, under the UK reporting requirement companies must disclose quantitative gender pay gap figures in six different formats.
“Despite the bar being set very low, it is still a step in the right direction that 80% of the ASX100 disclosing companies are undertaking payroll analyses and are consequently taking action to address their gender pay gap.
Kirstin Hunter, managing director of Future Super said: “The gender pay equity report shows investors can use their influence to address important social issues. Taking action on gender pay equality is one step towards addressing the reality that, in 2018, women are retiring with 47% less super than men.
“Short-changing women short changes us all. Increased gender diversity in the workplace corresponds with better investment returns, and businesses can’t deliver gender diversity if they don’t deliver gender pay equality. When companies short-change women, they short-change investors too.
“I’m advocating for a fairer future on behalf of all members. If other super funds are serious about closing the gender pay gap for their members, I hope they’ll join us in demanding better from Australia’s biggest companies.
The WGEA disclosures this report is based on is as of June 2017.
Brynn O’Brien (ACCR): firstname.lastname@example.org | +61 423951316
Nina Haysler (CAER): email@example.com | +61 2 9154 5356
Michael Bones (Future Super): firstname.lastname@example.org | +61 412 424 127