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There are all kinds of benefits to conducting regular salary surveys. As well as remaining competitive in the market, as a destination for the best candidates and an appealing prospect compared to peer companies, ensuring your employees’ pay and benefits are up to the mark plays a big part when it comes to making your employees feel valued – which is good for everything from morale and productivity, as well as development and retention.

However, responsive reward systems and pay transparency also require remuneration levels to be aligned with the market.

Greater analysis around pay

While many individuals prefer to keep their salaries private, and not at the forefront of major discussions, there are times where pay is pushed into the spotlight and people are far more sensitive to it. A good example is the gender pay gap and the scrutiny this promotes around pay inequality.

Incremental progress

This is a commentary that has been around for a long time, and while each major epoch of the last 100+ years – Industrial Revolution, WWI & WWII, 1970s Equal Pay Act – has pushed and shifted boundaries, the disparity between male and female workers’ value has remained.

Expectations of equality

No company is immune to the questions and challenges posed in pursuit of equal pay, regardless of its size or profile. Two years on from the publication of the BBC’s top earners’ pay levels that revealed a pay difference of 9.3 per cent and an imbalance of male and female presenters at the top, the BBC was recently defeated in an Employment Tribunal on the separate question of equal pay.

In 2018 actions were taken to close the gap with even some of their highest profile male employees taking pay cuts. The positive response to this approach is a clear example of why keeping your finger on the pulse is crucial, but the fact that they are still hitting headlines as an employer who is not upholding equality, raises questions about why a systematic, objective framework is not robustly operating. Auditing roles and constantly monitoring practices in place, that promote wider equality, is increasingly expected.

Proactive not reactive

When it comes to equal pay, be it gender-specific or otherwise, keeping your head in the sand is not an option. There are legal and regulatory measures in place, now more so than ever, to ensure all employees are treated and valued fairly – regardless of gender, ethnicity or in fact seniority with the introduction of pay ratios.

So how do I keep up to date with how my employees feel about their salaries?

This is exactly the right kind of question and approach. Be proactive. Make your company the place to be and make every effort to stay in tune with the workforce at large.

salary survey or review conducted by an experienced and objective third party body is a good start, but there are things to keep in mind day in and day out.

Communicate More

The easiest way to be in tune with your workforce is to be in touch with them. Speak to managers, department leaders, and even your HR specialists. But don’t forget to stop by the tea room and have a chat with whoever is there, drop in on team meetings, or if your schedule allows, book informal group chats each quarter to stay present as an approachable face and build strong open relationships with your employees.

Ongoing Research

Keep yourself educated and up to date with the most recent developments or changes to legislation and regulation. You may have a dedicated team or HR provider to manage this for you, but it is always best to stay informed. For example, do you know the finer details and the difference between the Equal Pay Act 1970, the Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and the Equality Act of 2010?

Get Creative
If you find your wages are fairly balanced and up to scratch, but you feel your workforce could be rewarded further, why not consider further benefits? Ensure your pension offering, holiday entitlements and bonus schemes are fair across the board and an attractive prospect overall. Could you introduce subsidised development courses, reward schemes or incentive programs?
Review Regularly

As well as making a conscientious effort to communicate, observe and do your research, be sure to conduct regular reviews of your own. It can be as simple as looking to see what wages and benefits your competitors are offering for the same roles and seeing if your offering stacks up. Armed with as much information as possible, you will be able to review your salary and benefits offering to ensure your team feels appreciated and valued.

If you need any guidance on how to conduct regular and more in-depth reviews, get in touch with one of our experts today.

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