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    • Amy198
    • By Amy198 7th Mar 18, 11:41 AM
    • 9Posts
    • 7Thanks
    Amy198
    Equal Pay - Gender Discrimination
    • #1
    • 7th Mar 18, 11:41 AM
    Equal Pay - Gender Discrimination 7th Mar 18 at 11:41 AM
    Hello,

    I am hoping someone might be able to help with this - apologies if is written a bit "factsy" but just wanted to not try and put emotion in it.

    I started my job in 2014 - as a data analyst. Team consisted to 2 other people, both men. I was roughly aware both were paid a bit more than me but put it down to them being in the role longer and thought the difference was smaller. Both had been doing data analysis less time than i had.

    In 2016 i was offered a secondment on another team as a senior analyst to cover maternity leave. They hired someone to cover me whilst on my secondment.

    It is now approaching the end of my secondment and i am arranging return to my old team. They are keeping on the person they hired to cover me as one of the other team members left durong this time.

    I have since found out that the person hired to cover my secondment (male) is paid significantly more tha i was. In my substantive post I was paid £24k a year (£28.5k in my secondment post) my replacement £26.5k and the other guy on the team £31k.

    When i started in the role i was coming to it with 4 years worth of data analyst experience, since then i have gained another 3 years in the company with one year of that being at a higher position.

    My replacement had no data analyst experience whatsoever and came into the job from his previous role as a shop assistant.

    I have asked my manager if we could look at reviewing my pay to be more in line with both my experience and the other members of the team.

    He has refused and said there is no budget for any increases. I have approached HR and raised this and gently indicated it as an equal pay issue but without explicity stating so. HR have come back and stated that it is up to managers discretion.

    Im not quite sure what my next steps are to be honest. Should i email HR and state clearly i want to bring an equal pay claim? Is it better to go straight to my union?

    Just for added info, I work for a large public sector organisation and both in my substantive role and secondment i have recieved the highest possible performance reviews. I am only not staying with my secondment team because they are going through a restrucure and I cannot be included as am on a secondment.

    This feels like a clear case of sex discrimination, I am easily (both on paper and in practice) more qualified and experienced for this role but am paid considerably less than both. The replacement for me particularly feels unfair as he had literally no experience coming into the role.

    Thanks for any help you might provide.
Page 2
    • demiruss
    • By demiruss 7th Mar 18, 3:12 PM
    • 56 Posts
    • 27 Thanks
    demiruss

    Anyway - aside from all this I've seen the ACAS advice posted above re questions and have put them to our HR team to ask them - if there is a reasonable reason why then fair enough but I cannot seem to find one.
    Originally posted by Amy198
    I hope you get somewhere with it, but I would look somewhere else as soon as feasible. You're right if what you've put is true there is no reasonable explanation for you to be paid less than the male colleagues. Unions are hit and miss with sex-based discrimination in the workplace. I would love to know how a shop assistant can start off on a £26k data analyst job And I would have refused to be accountable for all the low-level admin and made it clear it ought to be shared or they need to think about hiring someone to do it if it's not in your job description. If you give some employers an inch they will take a yard. I'm sure lots will disagree with this
    • t0rt0ise
    • By t0rt0ise 7th Mar 18, 3:15 PM
    • 3,004 Posts
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    t0rt0ise
    Good luck to you. Please let us know what happens.
    • TBagpuss
    • By TBagpuss 7th Mar 18, 3:18 PM
    • 6,487 Posts
    • 8,418 Thanks
    TBagpuss
    You see these things as demeaning?

    Do you think your colleagues might play down their performance or play up their pay?
    Originally posted by Comms69
    It's a problem that women in the workplace often face, being expected to carry out admin tasks which their male peers are never asked to do.

    It's like making the tea. It is not demeaning in and of itself, and it wouldn't be an issue if (say) everyone took it in turns to make tea, but it is demeaning when it is unequal, and when one person (almost always female) is expected to perform admin tasks in addition to doing her own role, especially when those admin task are for her peers. And it can create problems because if she is perceived as someone who does those admin tasks that can help create an impression that she is the most junior person ion the team, because they are the kind of the things which often trickle down.
    • NBLondon
    • By NBLondon 7th Mar 18, 3:30 PM
    • 1,773 Posts
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    NBLondon
    Amy,

    You said "Public sector". Are there specific payscales for certain grades with increments for seniority (subject to adequate appraisals)? If you have the same role, job description and tasks - you should be on the same scale but may have started at different points. The issue then would be how come the person recruited while you were on secondment started at a higher point with less relevant experience. (You've suggested a reason - but see if they can come up with a justifiable one.) As you've returned from secondment with wider experience, you have a case for returning on a higher point to reflect that. Of course, the "there's no money" excuse will be trotted out again.

    So good luck with the ACAS HR route especially if you have union backing. Cynically, have a plan B to go elsewhere as even if you win the argument and get a re-grading, you will not be flavour of the month!
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    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 7th Mar 18, 3:48 PM
    • 10,674 Posts
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    lincroft1710
    Amy, are you saying you actually work in the public sector, because if so, gender discrimination should have disappeared decades ago! But budgets will be tight and pay rises will usually be severely limited.
    • es5595
    • By es5595 7th Mar 18, 3:55 PM
    • 76 Posts
    • 90 Thanks
    es5595
    Anyway - aside from all this I've seen the ACAS advice posted above re questions and have put them to our HR team to ask them - if there is a reasonable reason why then fair enough but I cannot seem to find one.
    Originally posted by Amy198
    I hope you get an answer, from what you've said it sounds like you've got a good case to put forwards, especially with regards to the new guy who has no experience coming in on a higher rate than you.
    Please come back and let us know what the response is.
    • Wyndham
    • By Wyndham 7th Mar 18, 4:47 PM
    • 2,014 Posts
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    Wyndham
    Probably because you were preceived as doing it better. Some people are bad minute takers and organsiers. In my 40 years of industrial experience I can say that women tend to be better than men at that sort of thing anyway (men are, of course, better than women - generally speaking - at some other things).
    Originally posted by tenchy
    Please just play that back in your head and think about it.

    Either something is in the job description, or it isn't. If it is in the job description then anyone doing the role should do it. If they are not good at it, they should receive training or coaching to make them better at it.

    It has nothing whatsoever to do with gender, colour, race, sexual orientation or whether you have cornflakes or toast for breakfast.

    It is attitudes like this which are keeping women out of good and appropriate jobs.
    • Smodlet
    • By Smodlet 7th Mar 18, 6:03 PM
    • 3,027 Posts
    • 6,090 Thanks
    Smodlet
    Please just play that back in your head and think about it.

    Either something is in the job description, or it isn't. If it is in the job description then anyone doing the role should do it. If they are not good at it, they should receive training or coaching to make them better at it.

    It has nothing whatsoever to do with gender, colour, race, sexual orientation or whether you have cornflakes or toast for breakfast.

    It is attitudes like this which are keeping women out of good and appropriate jobs.
    Originally posted by Wyndham


    Absolutely. I can't believe the sexism on this thread and the pathetic arguments why it is either acceptable or "not sexism".

    All the best, Amy and please let us know how you get on. Reading your posts makes me wonder if anything has changed since the 1970s!
    What is this life if, sweet wordsmith, we have no time to take the pith?
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    • Manxman in exile
    • By Manxman in exile 7th Mar 18, 11:47 PM
    • 1,473 Posts
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    Manxman in exile
    Performance reviews are done on an annual basis - meeting all performance standards gets you a 1% increase, thats all that is possible.

    I was more drawing attention to the fact that I was the only one on the team required to do those things - i wouldn't have had a problem doing them if we did it on a rota basis or something but as the only woman on the team I was expected to do them - the other two on the team were not expected to do them.

    The basis of the facts for me is my line manager is openly quite sexist, i was expected to do more menial work than my male colleagues (in addition to other responsibilities) and I am paid over 10% less than my colleagues. To me this seems like I am being paid less for being a woman, there seems to be no reasonable reason why I would be paid less than the others.

    Anyway - aside from all this I've seen the ACAS advice posted above re questions and have put them to our HR team to ask them - if there is a reasonable reason why then fair enough but I cannot seem to find one.
    Originally posted by Amy198

    I wouldn't put it like that. To say you are being paid so much less than them is confusing for some public sector managers, (to use much and less in the same sentence can be confusing - you're a data analyst - use your brain to put an argument together - or may be they're better analysts than you!)
    • tenchy
    • By tenchy 8th Mar 18, 10:58 AM
    • 360 Posts
    • 113 Thanks
    tenchy
    Please just play that back in your head and think about it.

    Either something is in the job description, or it isn't. If it is in the job description then anyone doing the role should do it. If they are not good at it, they should receive training or coaching to make them better at it.

    It has nothing whatsoever to do with gender, colour, race, sexual orientation or whether you have cornflakes or toast for breakfast.

    It is attitudes like this which are keeping women out of good and appropriate jobs.
    Originally posted by Wyndham

    Okay, done it, but I still don't see the point you're making. Specific things like minute taking won't appear in a job description, except in the case of some admin jobs where the task is an important part of the role. Many meetings rotate the task, or ask for a volunteer, or appoint the person who's good at it.


    Are you challenging the obvious - that women are better at some types of job than men, and vice-versa (and the two sexes have, on the whole, different interests and aspirations)?


    Something else to consider: when I was first in the position of having people work for me, I had to carry out the annual salary review for my team. Imagine my consternation when I noted that one member of my team, a woman, was being paid more than me. The situation was, however, quickly understood - she was quite a bit older than me, she had worked for the company a lot longer than me, and the pay grades had large overlaps. This could easily have gone down as a case of the 'gender pay gap', but like the majority of such discrepancies, there was a valid reason for it. She was also very good at the job, so had progressed quickly through her grade.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 8th Mar 18, 11:16 AM
    • 2,970 Posts
    • 2,939 Thanks
    Comms69
    It's a problem that women in the workplace often face, being expected to carry out admin tasks which their male peers are never asked to do.

    It's like making the tea. It is not demeaning in and of itself, and it wouldn't be an issue if (say) everyone took it in turns to make tea, but it is demeaning when it is unequal, and when one person (almost always female) is expected to perform admin tasks in addition to doing her own role, especially when those admin task are for her peers. And it can create problems because if she is perceived as someone who does those admin tasks that can help create an impression that she is the most junior person ion the team, because they are the kind of the things which often trickle down.
    Originally posted by TBagpuss

    from my experience minute taking and event organisation is actually a highly sought after skillset. The fact they are incapable of doing them should be a credit to the OP, not seen as demeaning.


    I don't make teas, but I don't expect anyone to make mine - I always refuse offers.


    So yes I agree it can happen, but often it can be prevented with simple and polite steps.


    You mentioned that the minutes etc were in addition to her role. If that's the case then yes I agree it's not fair. But if it's instead of other duties it seems perfectly fair.


    For example I often make films as part of my duties. I'm the only one asked to do it, and i'm the lowest paid on my team. The rest of the team is female. I wouldn't dream of claiming discrimination - it's just something i'm good at and they aren't.
    • Kynthia
    • By Kynthia 8th Mar 18, 2:18 PM
    • 5,132 Posts
    • 7,131 Thanks
    Kynthia
    from my experience minute taking and event organisation is actually a highly sought after skillset. The fact they are incapable of doing them should be a credit to the OP, not seen as demeaning.


    I don't make teas, but I don't expect anyone to make mine - I always refuse offers.


    So yes I agree it can happen, but often it can be prevented with simple and polite steps.


    You mentioned that the minutes etc were in addition to her role. If that's the case then yes I agree it's not fair. But if it's instead of other duties it seems perfectly fair.


    For example I often make films as part of my duties. I'm the only one asked to do it, and i'm the lowest paid on my team. The rest of the team is female. I wouldn't dream of claiming discrimination - it's just something i'm good at and they aren't.
    Originally posted by Comms69
    You come across very agressive. You don't get to decide if something is demeaning to someone. Women being asked to make the tea, do the birthday collections, perform admin tasks when it's not their job is a common issue that is gender based and gives the impression she is lower ranked than her peers. Those who don't consider it an issue are at risk of contributing to this gender based behaviour and should actually educate themselves to prevent it and become more aware. Arguing against it helps noone.
    Don't listen to me, I'm no expert!
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 8th Mar 18, 2:22 PM
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    Comms69
    You come across very agressive. You don't get to decide if something is demeaning to someone. Women being asked to make the tea, do the birthday collections, perform admin tasks when it's not their job is a common issue that is gender based and gives the impression she is lower ranked than her peers. Those who don't consider it an issue are at risk of contributing to this gender based behaviour and should actually educate themselves to prevent it and become more aware. Arguing against it helps noone.
    Originally posted by Kynthia
    Oh no, not aggressive. That would be terrible.


    Well I do when I'm managing a team, actually. Failure to perform a reasonable request would lead straight into disciplinary.


    An employee being asked to perform a general duty, e.g. minute taking. Absolutely with-in the scope.


    Making tea and birthday collections are not work related and therefore would fall outside that scope (i didn't mention either of those)


    You're making it gender based. I'm just seeing an employee being asked to perform a reasonable task.
    • Wyndham
    • By Wyndham 8th Mar 18, 3:14 PM
    • 2,014 Posts
    • 2,309 Thanks
    Wyndham
    Are you challenging the obvious - that women are better at some types of job than men, and vice-versa (and the two sexes have, on the whole, different interests and aspirations)?
    Originally posted by tenchy
    Yes, that's what I'm challenging. And to me it isn't obvious at all. What is obvious is that as a woman, I have been told my whole life that I should behave in a 'ladylike' way, that I shouldn't rock the boat, that I should be demur and quiet, that I should worry more about my hair than my career and that I'm just not as intelligent as any man. These messages have come from people I've actually met, but also from the media, the news, wider society. Start to look at it, seriously, take a look at the messages which are presented, take a step back, think them through. It happens all the time.

    I'm a woman in what was a male dominated industry - IT. Over the years I've seen many more women come through, and many of them are brilliant. But, we all have to work twice as hard as a man to be thought half as good.

    It goes the other way too. It's still tricky to be a man who wants to work with children. At one point being a male nurse was 'odd', but thankfully we seem to be past that point now - or nearly past it at least.

    And no, I don't agree that the two sexes have different interests and aspirations. Please take that attitude back to the cave you found it in. You'll be saying next that people who are black can't do certain jobs. Think for a moment how that would feel? Thankfully, in this day and age, we are (mostly) past those attitudes. Unfortunately, we have a long way to go in terms of gender equality.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 8th Mar 18, 3:20 PM
    • 2,970 Posts
    • 2,939 Thanks
    Comms69
    Yes, that's what I'm challenging. And to me it isn't obvious at all. What is obvious is that as a woman, I have been told my whole life that I should behave in a 'ladylike' way, that I shouldn't rock the boat, that I should be demur and quiet, that I should worry more about my hair than my career and that I'm just not as intelligent as any man. These messages have come from people I've actually met, but also from the media, the news, wider society. Start to look at it, seriously, take a look at the messages which are presented, take a step back, think them through. It happens all the time. - Why don't you save some time and point them out? There's lots of good reasons to be told to behave a certain way, the most obvious is that the way you behave will influence how others perceive you. This is a lesson that your parents would've taught you, just like they did me as a bloke.

    I'm a woman in what was a male dominated industry - IT. Over the years I've seen many more women come through, and many of them are brilliant. But, we all have to work twice as hard as a man to be thought half as good.

    It goes the other way too. It's still tricky to be a man who wants to work with children. At one point being a male nurse was 'odd', but thankfully we seem to be past that point now - or nearly past it at least. - indeed, but neither is a gender issue. It's what people think, you neither you nor I can control that.

    And no, I don't agree that the two sexes have different interests and aspirations. - There is commonality in many fields which lead to having a disproportionate workforce. It's not a bad thing per se, often there is no agenda behind it and just the way life is. Please take that attitude back to the cave you found it in. You'll be saying next that people who are black can't do certain jobs. Think for a moment how that would feel? Thankfully, in this day and age, we are (mostly) past those attitudes. Unfortunately, we have a long way to go in terms of gender equality.
    Originally posted by Wyndham


    I don't think there is natural aptitude in any given career, but biologically men and women are different and there is certainly something to be said about being physically more capable for certain jobs
    • tenchy
    • By tenchy 8th Mar 18, 3:41 PM
    • 360 Posts
    • 113 Thanks
    tenchy
    Yes, that's what I'm challenging. And to me it isn't obvious at all. What is obvious is that as a woman, I have been told my whole life that I should behave in a 'ladylike' way, that I shouldn't rock the boat, that I should be demur and quiet, that I should worry more about my hair than my career and that I'm just not as intelligent as any man. These messages have come from people I've actually met, but also from the media, the news, wider society. Start to look at it, seriously, take a look at the messages which are presented, take a step back, think them through. It happens all the time.

    I'm a woman in what was a male dominated industry - IT. Over the years I've seen many more women come through, and many of them are brilliant. But, we all have to work twice as hard as a man to be thought half as good.

    It goes the other way too. It's still tricky to be a man who wants to work with children. At one point being a male nurse was 'odd', but thankfully we seem to be past that point now - or nearly past it at least.

    And no, I don't agree that the two sexes have different interests and aspirations. Please take that attitude back to the cave you found it in. You'll be saying next that people who are black can't do certain jobs. Think for a moment how that would feel? Thankfully, in this day and age, we are (mostly) past those attitudes. Unfortunately, we have a long way to go in terms of gender equality.
    Originally posted by Wyndham

    Claptrap of the highest order. I've recently retired from a career in IT. My first job in the profession was working for a woman; I've worked for women, with women and had women working for me, and this with various companies. No woman has ever had to work any differently from men in my experience. They have always progressed on merit. Why are there more men than women in IT? Because like lots of other work it appeals more to men than to women. You might not like that, but it's a fact. There's nothing stopping any woman getting a job in IT, or emptying dustbins for that matter. The majority just don't want to do it. Instead, they want to be teachers, nurses and hairdressers, for example.
    Last edited by tenchy; 08-03-2018 at 3:45 PM.
    • KittenChops
    • By KittenChops 8th Mar 18, 4:00 PM
    • 106 Posts
    • 64 Thanks
    KittenChops
    Absolutely. I can't believe the sexism on this thread and the pathetic arguments why it is either acceptable or "not sexism".

    All the best, Amy and please let us know how you get on. Reading your posts makes me wonder if anything has changed since the 1970s!
    Originally posted by Smodlet
    ^^^This. A million times.

    Are you challenging the obvious - that women are better at some types of job than men, and vice-versa (and the two sexes have, on the whole, different interests and aspirations)?
    Originally posted by tenchy

    Yep, Iíll challenge this, as a woman who finds those things which have typically been branded as male far more easy / interesting than those typically branded as female. For example, I can read maps and park a car easily. I love football. Iím useless at multi-tasking. I hated dolls when I was a kid, and instead loved Lego and toy cars. And my job is in programming. Want me to go on?
    from my experience minute taking and event organisation is actually a highly sought after skillset. The fact they are incapable of doing them should be a credit to the OP, not seen as demeaning.
    Originally posted by Comms69

    Having previously working in a similar sounding role to the OP, I too would find being asked to minute take etc demeaning and I certainly wouldnít be including it on my CV. However, the bone of contention here is not the task itself, but the fact only the female member of staff is ever asked to do it.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 8th Mar 18, 4:10 PM
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    • 2,939 Thanks
    Comms69


    ^^^This. A million times.


    Yep, Iíll challenge this, as a woman who finds those things which have typically been branded as male far more easy / interesting than those typically branded as female. For example, I can read maps and park a car easily. I love football. Iím useless at multi-tasking. I hated dolls when I was a kid, and instead loved Lego and toy cars. And my job is in programming. Want me to go on?

    Having previously working in a similar sounding role to the OP, I too would find being asked to minute take etc demeaning and I certainly wouldnít be including it on my CV. However, the bone of contention here is not the task itself, but the fact only the female member of staff is ever asked to do it.
    Originally posted by KittenChops
    Sorry that is only a contention for it seems people with a certain viewpoint.


    If she is the best at the task, why should she not do it?


    Genuinely if anyone in a team I managed refused to do this they would be on the list.


    (I think you'd be foolish to not mention a sought after skill - but that's up to you.)
    • Tabbytabitha
    • By Tabbytabitha 8th Mar 18, 4:23 PM
    • 2,233 Posts
    • 3,751 Thanks
    Tabbytabitha
    Claptrap of the highest order. I've recently retired from a career in IT. My first job in the profession was working for a woman; I've worked for women, with women and had women working for me, and this with various companies. No woman has ever had to work any differently from men in my experience. They have always progressed on merit. Why are there more men than women in IT? Because like lots of other work it appeals more to men than to women. You might not like that, but it's a fact. There's nothing stopping any woman getting a job in IT, or emptying dustbins for that matter. The majority just don't want to do it. Instead, they want to be teachers, nurses and hairdressers, for example.
    Originally posted by tenchy
    Good grief - I've fallen through a time warp into 1973!
    • tenchy
    • By tenchy 8th Mar 18, 4:26 PM
    • 360 Posts
    • 113 Thanks
    tenchy


    ^^^This. A million times.


    Yep, Iíll challenge this, as a woman who finds those things which have typically been branded as male far more easy / interesting than those typically branded as female. For example, I can read maps and park a car easily. I love football. Iím useless at multi-tasking. I hated dolls when I was a kid, and instead loved Lego and toy cars. And my job is in programming. Want me to go on?

    Having previously working in a similar sounding role to the OP, I too would find being asked to minute take etc demeaning and I certainly wouldnít be including it on my CV. However, the bone of contention here is not the task itself, but the fact only the female member of staff is ever asked to do it.
    Originally posted by KittenChops

    Well it just goes to show that it takes all sorts. My wife is also good at map reading and parking, but she doesn't like football, but then, nor do I. However, the majority of women are not so inclined as you to being a programmer. Any woman who wants to be a programmer can become one. There's nothing stopping them. As I said previously, most are just not interested. Or perhaps more accurately, more men than women are interested in programming, and who cares, provided all programmers are up to the job.
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