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The future of women in the working world Pt 1: The gender pay gap and why it matters

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​“We expect women to work like they don’t have children and raise children as if they don’t work”.

In our latest episode of devcast… Nicola Broomham – Director of Client Solutions at deverellsmith kicked off our three-part series with Susan Gregory – Organisational Development Consultant and Ellie Reese – Co-owner and Director at Brickworks. They are addressing the matters women have faced within the estate agency space and in the world when it comes to career growth and opportunities.

In this episode, the three explore the gender pay gap, how this impacts the estate agency world, why it’s becoming a more prevalent topic in today’s landscape and how we as employers and employees can make steps towards making a difference.

Read below some of what was discussed in this episode or listen now to their full podcast!

The gender pay gap vs equal pay

​The gender pay gap can often be a misunderstood topic and sometimes confused with equal pay. Susan Gregory explains that the gender pay gap concerns the difference in hourly pay between men and women. This is where an organisation will calculate the earnings of their male employees and divide that by the total number of men in the business. They will then do the same with women and the difference between those numbers is what the gender pay gap represents. This often highlights a disparity of earnings between men and women.

The gender gap is not comparing those that are working in the same role and are being paid a different amount (however some are), it’s highlighting that women are often in lower paid, less senior, and less decision-making positions.

​Ellie Reese explains that the gender pay gap goes further by separating the mean and median average into lower, middle, and upper quartiles. Usually, if you have a workforce of majority women which most estate agencies do, most women are sitting in the lower pay quartile, showing they are in those more supporting roles.

The estate agency world

Considering only companies with over 250 employees need to publish what their gender pay gap is, Nicola, asks how this impacts the estate agency world where most of those businesses are going to be working under that number.

They discuss that it is difficult, however, the 20-odd organisations in the industry that do qualify for that number represent well what an estate agency looks like. Most of the small independent agencies will have structures and processes like those of bigger, corporate estate agencies. Corporate businesses have a responsibility of setting the tone because they are highly visible within the industry.

Why is the conversation around the gender pay gap becoming more prevalent?

​Ellie Reese suggests that the aftermath of the pandemic has changed the landscape of the working world in general and has highlighted so many things that are based on gender.

Furthermore, there has been a rise to the surface of dissatisfaction in general since the me-too movement, and we are more open to having these honest conversations.

As a society we are becoming more aware of the world around us and what is acceptable, leading to the gender pay gap being on people’s minds, which in turn is reflecting the culture of the workplace.​

Listen now to hear the full podcast and more about how childcare affects the gender pay gap, and what we as employers and employees can make steps towards a difference…