Accountancy giant PwC will no longer allow shortlists of candidates for any jobs in the UK that consist only of men as it attempts to close its gender pay gap, the worst among the big four for mean hourly pay.
Women make up 48% of the company’s workforce yet are paid 43.8% less than male colleagues including partners, when bonuses are included.
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PwC has said that recruitment was one of the most important areas for addressing gender inequality. It also announced plans to end all-male interview panels and examine how “career defining roles” were awarded.
PwC’s chief people officer Laura Hinton said that ensuring everybody who worked for the firm had access to important career opportunities such as working on big projects or for well-known clients, would be “a real game changer”.
She said the move was part of the firm’s strategy to increase the diversity of its workforce, which included examining the attitude of senior management.
PwC also has a returnship programme, which encourages those who have taken a break from work, such as maternity leave, to do six months’ paid work experience.
The company has also started to allocate “progression coaches” – usually partners – who will work with women and ethnic minorities employees to help develop their careers.
The other firms that make up the big four – EY, KPMG and Deloitte – are expected to announce similar measures. A spokesman for KPMG told the Daily Mail: “We will be intolerant of firms that provide us with non-diverse shortlists.
“We’ve also made it clear we expect greater efforts around the other areas we report on for our own employees such as ethnicity, sexuality and socio-economic background.”
Highlighting the need to recruit more women and people from ethnic minorities into senior positions, Kevin Ellis, chair and senior partner at PwC, said earlier this year: “We pay our women and men equally for doing the same or equivalent jobs across our business. The issue is one of senior representation rather than pay inequality and it is not good enough.”
Gender pay gaps at the ‘big four’
|Mean %||Median %||Mean %||Median %|
|EY Services Ltd||19.7||14.8||38.1||19.5|
|KPMG UK Ltd||22.3||22.1||42||27|
|PwC Services Ltd||12||13.1||43.8||18.7|
|Deloitte MCS Ltd||20.4||17.8||43.2||15.2|