On June 5th 2019, I had the privilege of being able to talk to the Treasury Select Committee about the “Effectiveness of Gender Pay Gap Reporting“. My name was put forward by the Royal Statistical Society and we spent an hour discussing a number of issues with a particular focus on the Finance sector.
The session was split into two panels and I was in the first panel where I was joined by Sarah Gordon, the former Business Editor of the Financial Times. The second panel had two representatives of the Government Equality Office (GEO), Hillary Spencer and Elysia McCaffrey.
The MPs asking questions were:-
- Nicky Morgan, Conservative MP for Loughborough and Chair of the committee
- John Mann, Labour MP for Bassetlaw
- Alison McGovern, Labour MP for Wirral South
- Catherine McKinnell, Labour MP for Newcastle upon Tyne North
- Hosie Stewart, SNP MP for Dundee East who arrived for the second panel and therefore did not ask me any questions
I was wearing two hats in this session. The first as myself as someone with extensive experience of working with, explaining statistical ideas to and providing training for non-statisticians. Given that Gender Pay Gap Reporting is a statistical exercise to be undertaken by mostly HR professionals with no statistical background, I felt I had something to give the committee with this perspective. The second hat was as a contributing author to the “10 Recommendations for Improving Gender Pay Gap Reporting” document published by the Royal Statistical Society in April and I am grateful that the RSS were willing to allow me to speak in their name.
Click here to watch the full session. My part with Sarah Gordon lasts just over an hour.
Looking back, I was helped by a good briefing by the committee clerk. As a result, I wasn’t caught out by any of the questions and I felt I managed to convey some key points I wanted to get across. All in all, it was a very interesting experience and I hope the committee found my comments useful.
– Need help with interpreting your gender pay gap? –
I offer the following services.
- Analysis – I can dig deep into your data to identify the key drivers of your pay gaps. I can build a model using a large number of variables such as pay band, seniority, job function, location, etc and use this to identify the priority areas for closing your gaps.
- Training – I run training courses in basic statistics which are designed for non-statisticians such as people working in HR. The courses will show you how to perform the relevant calculations in Microsoft Excel, how to interpret what they mean for you and how to incorporate these in an action plan to close your gaps.
- Expert Witness – Has your gender pay gap data uncovered an issue resulting in legal action? Need an expert independent statistician who can testify whether the data supports or contradicts a claim of discrimination? I have experience of acting as an expert witness for either plaintiff or defendant and I know how to testify and explain complex data in simple language that can be easily understood by non-statisticians.
If you would like to have a no-obligation discussion about how I can help you, please do contact me.
– Want to know more about the gender pay gap? –
I have written a number of articles about the gender pay gap covering these topics:-
- What gender pay gap data tells us, what it doesn’t tell us and how it can be misused
- Three distinct errors that have been made by at least 10% of all organisations when submitting their gender pay gap data
- How to distinguish between a true pay gap and a pay gap that arises naturally due to the laws of chance
- My 12 steps to improve public confidence in gender pay gap data
- Calculate your gender pay gap by downloading my free spreadsheet calculator!
- Did the gender pay gap narrow in 2018?
- How to identify unusual year on year changes in gender pay gaps
- Frequently Asked Questions about gender pay gaps.
Finally visit my Twitter thread to see my comments on gender pay gaps in the media. Some notable ones are here.