Supermarket giant Asda has been under fire in recent years due to female employees’ legal action who believed they were underpaid. Now, it has been revealed the retailer has reported a mean gender pay gap of 8.4% for average hourly pay as of April 2020, an improvement from previous years.
The organisation, which currently has more than 20,000 employees in the UK, reported its data in line with the Government’s gender pay gap regulations.
Asda has reduced its median gender pay gap by 1% and mean pay gap by 2.7% compared to 2019, meaning the median pay gap difference between female and male colleagues is now 5.5% as of April 2020, compared to 31.6% the previous year. On average, women earn 94p compared to every £1 their male counterparts earn.
Last year saw a significant increase in the proportion of women working in the upper two pay quartiles and a reduction in the proportion of female colleagues in the lowest pay quartile at Asda.
Eighty-six per cent of Asda’s colleagues work in hourly paid roles in stores, which have set hourly rates of pay. The median gender pay gap within that population, based on those rates alone, is 0%. Females now occupy 38% of senior roles at Asda.
Despite the supreme court disputes, Sheila Flavell, COO, FDM Group says that Asda should be celebrated for its progress: “It is great to see a supermarket like Asda showing commitment to being a diverse and inclusive employer and another reduced pay gap again which is significantly below the national average.
“UK retail tends to face many challenges when it comes to female representation in senior roles, but hopefully, in time, this will change, and we will see even more progress.”
As other supermarkets face similar equal pay disputes, potentially amounting to £8 billion in pay-outs, perhaps they should be taking a new approach, continues Flavell. “It would be brilliant if all large shops strive to introduce policies to encourage managers and those responsible for recruitment to think about diversity when planning for roles and to identify opportunities to accelerate female development through “talented pipeline” programmes.
“Asda should be proud that they achieved a median gender pay gap of 24.8% compared to last year when the median bonus pay for women was 17.6% lower than for men. Similarly, FDM Group announced a median gender pay of -2.1% amid the pandemic. Companies must follow suit and consider gender equality while building a diverse and inclusive workforce.”