Gender pay gap deepens during COVID, women left behind on pay hike, bonuses: Study
Gender pay gap has deepened during the COVID-19 pandemic, with women being left behind on pay raises and bonuses, says an ADP study.
According to ADP's study 'People at Work 2021: A Global Workforce View', in India only 65 per cent of women received a pay rise or bonus for taking on extra responsibilities or a new role compared to 70 per cent of men.
This disparity exists despite the study finding that men and women were just as likely to take on additional responsibilities or a new role due to COVID-19-related impacts on their organisations.
ADP Research Institute surveyed 32,471 workers in 17 countries around the world between November 17 and December 11, 2020.
"The gender pay gap is an issue that goes much deeper than salaries. There are many factors to consider such as the social dynamics of society, what government support is available and the culture of a workplace," Yvonne Teo, Vice President of HR in Asia Pacific of the payroll solutions provider, ADP, said.
Teo further said that bonus is just one of many factors that have contributed to an increased gender pay gap since the onset of the pandemic.
"It doesn't happen overnight. To effectively and sustainably eradicate a pay gap, there needs to be a long-term strategy over three or five years with targets and frameworks in place that cover the employee life cycle, from talent acquisition and promotions to departure and internal education.
"Without a dedicated and continued focus on diversity, equity and inclusion across the business, we will see a repeat of the backward steps taken during COVID-19 on gender disparity," Teo said.
The ADP study also revealed that employees are still judged for taking advantage of flexible working arrangements (71 per cent of females and 64 per cent of males feel judged).
Rahul Goyal, Managing Director ADP India, said there are implications on employee satisfaction if companies do not solve the issue, which is particularly challenging amidst the current demand for talent.
"Employees' perceptions of fairness play a critical part in their sense of loyalty and dedication, which in turn impact productivity and talent retention, and more widely, reputation. If women start to feel that their efforts are being overlooked especially in reference to their male colleagues that's a situation employers will want to avoid at all costs," Goyal said.