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As some people may already know, all UK companies with over 250 employees have to report on the gender pay gap at their companies.

It is illegal to pay someone less than another person for the same work because of gender, race, religion etc. Largely these types of gaps come from different job roles and different amounts of experience.

Where I work, we have performance related pay rises, as do many other companies. If we have two employees (A & B), who both join the company from uni, with the same degree into the same job role, but A is generally seen as more productive than B, then A will get a better pay rise. They are still technically doing the same job, with the same title, but A earns more money.

This seems like a fair system assuming the way their performance is rated is accurate. But does this count as pay discrimination if A & B are different genders? Or is this system ok because the company can point to the performance reviews of each employee as evidence of why one is earning more than the other?

closed as off-topic by Erik, gnat, scaaahu, Snow, DarkCygnus Apr 9 '18 at 18:53

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    This sounds like more of a legal question than a workplace one. I don't think it is on-topic here. – Erik Apr 5 '18 at 9:34
  • “It is illegal to pay someone less than another person for the same work because of gender, race, religion etc.“ -Yes – Donald Apr 5 '18 at 11:29
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    Performance ratings (even so called "objective" ones) are seriously inaccurate in many workplaces. – HLGEM Apr 5 '18 at 15:37
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Or is this system ok because the company can point to the performance reviews of each employee as evidence of why one is earning more than the other?

This type of pay gap is justified. According to the Wikipedia summary of the Equal Pay Act 1970 (superseded by the Equality Act 2010):

For an employee to claim under this Act they must prove one of the following:

  • That the work done by the claimant is the same, or broadly the same, as the other employee.

  • That the work done by the claimant is of equal value (in terms of effort, skill, decision and similar demands) to that of the other employee.

  • That the work done by the claimant is rated (by a job evaluation study) the same as that of the other employee.

Once the employee has established that they are employed on 'equal work' with their comparator then they are entitled to 'equal pay' unless the employer proves that the difference in pay is genuinely due to a material factor which is not the difference in gender.

Emphasis is mine.

  • While I agree with your answer, I want to point out to the OP that performance ratings are often not accurate. If all the white men get high ratings and all the women and people of color do not, then you need to look at bias in the organization concerning job assignments and ratings. Yes some white men are better performers in general, just as some people of color are the better performers and some women are the better performers. It is when all the rewards go to one class of people that you have a problem. – HLGEM Apr 5 '18 at 15:35
  • True @HLGEM. Many performance ratings are based on whether your face fits in the organisation. – WorkerWithoutACause Apr 5 '18 at 21:32

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