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Employees who feel valued are most likely to stay with an organisation and work to their best. Parity of pay and being transparent about salaries is critical, as is investing time to develop individuals, providing opportunities for their opinions to be heard and acted on, and encouraging them to act as ambassadors for the organisation. All will increase job satisfaction and develop their perceptions of being valued as an important and integral part of the company.

Although women are often less concerned about maximising their salary they still expect to be treated fairly when it comes to their salary.

  • Ensure that you offer parity of salary and pay grade to all
  • Engage fully with the gender pay gap reporting measures and carry out a proper and full analysis
  • Act on your findings to ensure women have confidence in the pay and reward structure within your business.

For advice visit the ACAS website.

Evidence suggests that lack of parity in pay with male career progression starts to creep in early in female careers.

  • Track the pay of your female apprentices and employees against their male counterparts - this will provide important indictors and if this starts to happen, you can then take early action
  • Make sure they are advertised and communicated to everyone within the business (rather than being awarded on ‘the nod’)
  • Support and encourage the women within your teams to consider these next steps and not hold back
  • Consider unbiased succession planning, identify talent early and set progression targets and review any failure to progress to these targets
  • Ensure removal of unconscious bias at all stages in the recruitment process.

Transparency of opportunity is also a key sign of equity in the workplace.

Evidence suggests that one of the key areas that helps women succeed and climb the career ladder is experience of challenging projects and stretching assignments. These can develop both skills and confidence.

  • Direct your HR department and line managers to work together to proactively identify suitable short secondments and special projects within the company, and via partners and your supply chain, to offer this
  • Identify the key learning outcomes and career benefits of these projects, and match these to the female participant’s abilities and progression route
  • Support the female employee to feel confident that she can meet the requirements of the project and so that she can see the benefits of participating
  • Consider any barriers (i.e. work loading, caring responsibilities) that may influence her decision to participate and look at how these can be supported
  • Acknowledge success on completion.

Executives and senior management from within the business can benefit from listening to and understanding the view point and experiences of your female employees who represent a diverse voice in a male dominated environment.

  • Set up a reverse mentoring system within the company between senior managers and female employees. Be clear on what you are wanting to achieve and the benefits for employees
  • Ensure that the participants are supported to feel safe and confident in expressing honest opinions. Failure to do this will prevent participants offering honest views
  • The emphasis should be on the manager asking for opinions and advice from the female employee on issues facing the business, including how to create a more diverse and inclusive environment
  • A group situation can produce different responses to individual mentoring. Participants may feel more confident and supported by group responses to a difficult situation, or they may want to express opinions in private - try both
  • Value and be seen to act on responses – failure to do so will devalue the process in the future.
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