This year, employers in both the public and private sectors need to be mindful of the upcoming gender pay gap reporting deadline. The deadline is 30 March 2018 for public sector employers or 4 April 2018 for all other employers. If your school meets certain criteria, you will need to consider your reporting obligations. Hopefully, as a result of our previous alerts on this subject you are well ahead with this task.
An employer must comply with the gender pay gap regulations for any year where they have a ‘headcount’ of 250 or more employees on 31 March. Employers with fewer than 250 employees on this date are not required to comply with the regulations, but Acas suggests giving consideration to the business benefits of doing so.
Schools will only have to publish gender pay reports if the ‘legal entity they are part of’ has 250 or more employees. The proprietor of a MAT is responsible for reporting on all the academies in the Trust, so the MAT will need to comply with the reporting obligations if it has 250 or more employees across all of the schools in the Trust. Depending on the extent to which employment issues are delegated, individual schools may need to provide certain information to the MAT to enable it to meet its duties. For maintained schools, the governing body is responsible for publishing its gender pay reports. No schools (except for pupil referral units) will be included in the local authority gender pay reporting.
Independent schools should follow the private sector gender pay reporting regulations, and the responsibility for publishing their gender pay reports lies with the legal employer.
Acas (the workplace information and advice service) has produced a helpful guide entitled ‘Managing gender pay reporting’ in conjunction with the Government Equalities Office.
The Acas guide sets out what information employers will have to provide, and employers should check that their systems will allow these figures to be calculated. For example, employers should ensure they can extract the essential information listed on page 10 of the guide; and ensure they understand the six required calculations on page 11-16 of the guide.
The end of March may seem to be a comfortably long way away, but the obligations require employers to publish the results of these specific calculations and, where applicable, a written and signed statement and supporting narrative. This information must be published on the employer’s own website and on a designated government website. This not a short piece of work, particularly if it is being done for the first time. It is therefore important to ensure your organisation has enough time to assimilate and publish the required information in advance of the deadline.