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Ensuring that employees are recognised for their value, not just in terms of revenue but also culturally, is simply good business.

As Britain’s largest employers prepare to report differences between male and female salaries as part of new government rules, owners of smaller companies could be forgiven for thinking responsibility for closing the ‘pay gap’ lies elsewhere. 

If they do, they’re missing the point. This is because exploring and addressing gender pay discrepancies is not only fair but offers an opportunity to attract the best talent.

Creating a positive culture

Many small businesses are still broadly unaware of the debate around the gender pay gap. They dismiss it as something that only big corporates have a responsibility to address. There’s a bit of a disconnect.

Indeed, while owners understand the importance of due diligence when it comes to the practical, day-to-day running of their business, many fail to take the time to identify the potential value of their employees to the business.

They know if they’re making a profit and can afford to pay their bills, but not how the quality of their workforce boosts their revenue and promotes a positive culture.

Talented people tend to be attracted to companies that openly promote the value of ability, experience and knowledge – rather than directly or indirectly focusing on gender, age, ethnicity or any other factor.

Cost effective tips

Initiatives to address equality will generate the leap from an okay to an attractive employer and require little investment. Candidates will assess you online; Glassdoor, the ‘TripAdvisor for employers’, for example. 

Social media and your website, with careful management, are great tools to demonstrate why people should work for you. You will also be ‘called out’ publicly if you’re not acting equitably and being transparent. Be brave and open about your commitment to equality and you will have much better access to the talent pool.

Where Haines Watts can help is to make sure that clients who seek advice on related issues, such as finding and attracting the best talent, understand the importance and benefit of equality. 

We help business owners to explore the benefits of being transparent and positioning themselves as employers that offer equal opportunities. To do so, we disrupt their thinking, educate and remove bias that may have been created and never challenged.

Find and contact your local Haines Watts office

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