Gender Pay Gap: Business vs football

As I am sure you are all aware, gender pay is a massive issue that is being addressed throughout the Reward and HR world, with companies now looking to assess the difference in pay between men and women throughout the organisation. This combined with the recent news that Iceland have made it illegal for men to be paid more than women for the same work, I thought it would be an interesting idea to compare the biggest extreme in pay I can think of, the difference between male and female pay in football.

 

With the January transfer window having come to an end and with the high-profile transfers of Coutinho, Van Dijk and Sanchez to mention a few have seen transfer fees getting higher and with that often goes salaries. Alexis Sanchez is reportedly earning in excess of £350,000 per week purely through his basic salary, I wanted to see how his and other elite footballer wages compared to their female counterparts.

 

Alex Morgan is widely regarding as one of the top female players currently playing across the globe, it is estimated that she currently earns £117,000 per YEAR! A massive difference when compared to the salary levels of professional male players such as Sanchez and Coutinho. With the vast difference it was no surprise that many other professions, have been keen to understand more about the difference in pay between male and female employees.

 

A number of organisations have started to publish their gender pay findings ahead of the April 4th deadline, with varying amounts of criticism from the public. One organisation that made big headlines was the BBC around how its biggest earning male presenters were paid more than their female colleagues. In the end the pay gap revealed a 9% comparison, which is relatively low when compared to other organisations. Many of the BBC’s highest earning male presenters agreed to take pay cuts as did Johan Lundgren, CEO of Easyjet, following the announcement of a 52% gender pay gap.

 

With several high earning male employees agreeing to taking pay cuts or reductions in their salaries, I wonder whether this is the best way of reducing or cancelling out the gender pay gap? Would it be a fairer representation to increase female colleagues to the same levels as male colleagues? Would increasing female pay cause too much of a challenge for roles where the gender pay gap impacts 1000’s or 10,000’s of employees?

 

I’m sure by the 4th April we will see more and more organisations publishing their gender pay reports with varying levels of ‘gap’ that will need addressing. One thing I am struggling to see is how female footballers will earn anything close to that of their male colleagues.

 

 


Blog written by: Dean Mottram, Reward Recruitment Consultant at Williams Kent Ltd
22nd March 2018

 

 

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