University of Leeds Reports 22.5% Gender Pay Gap

The University has released its Gender Pay Gap 2017 report, which sets out and explains the institution’s ‘gender pay gap’ data from the period 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017, and how they are working to eliminate the gap. 

‘Gender pay gap’ refers to the average salary of all women employed by the University of Leeds, compared to the average salary of all male employees. This looks at the distribution of men and women across the levels of the organisation, and so differs from the equal pay gap, which tells us whether there are differences in pay between men and women doing comparable work.

The report found a 22.5% pay gap, although there is no significant equal pay gap between men and women at the at the same grade. However, 61.3% of the highest paid roles are occupied by men, and 65.2% of the lowest paid roles are occupied by women, which is attributed as being a significant factor in the University’s gender pay gap.  

The University has been working to rectify this, and the pay gap has reduced since 2010. In addition, the number of women in the most senior academic position, Professor, has increased by 88% since 2010, compared to a 23% increase in male professors. The number of women at the next level, Associate Professor, has increased by 30%, compared to an increase of 9% for men at the same level.  

In terms of bonuses, both the University and the NHS award these to staff. Across these two sources, 5.2% of women and 5.1% of men receive a bonus, so an equal proportion of women and men receive bonus payments overall. However, when solely looking at the bonuses provided by the NHS, a higher percentage of men receive these, with an average award gap of £6,510 between men and women. 

To continue to reduce the pay gap and rectify the issues highlighted in the report, the University are planning to take a number of steps. These are listed as attracting more women to senior roles, creating a more even gender balance across the organisation, identifying and nurturing potential already in the organisation, and attaining and retaining female clinical academics. 

A University spokesperson said: 

“Whilst generally we do not have an issue with equal pay, our gender pay gap is clearly not good enough, and we know women are still under-represented in our most senior roles. Across our 8,000 staff, another critical factor is the higher proportion of women in our lower paid roles.

“We have been focusing our actions to tackle this imbalance. For example, we’ve prioritised developing talent within the organisation and attracting more women to apply for senior roles, because we know women are equally likely as men to be interviewed and appointed.

“We’ve made progress, but we know we need to go further, and we’re committed to reducing this gap. We have been commissioning and publishing independent audits on equal pay and gender pay gaps proactively since 2010, and have used this information to develop targeted plans of action.”

Leeds University Union has also reported a pay gap of 8.7%, which is lower than the average of all companies reported, which stands is 9.7%. Women make up the largest percentage of workers across all levels of the organisation, however, with 55.6% of higher-paid roles and 78.9% of lower-paid roles.

Other higher education institutions in Leeds whose gender pay gap data has been published:

Leeds College of Music: 16.2% gender pay gap, with women making up 27.8% of higher-paid jobs and 41.2% of lower-paid jobs.

Leeds Trinity University: 11.5% gender pay gap, with women making up 53.7% of higher-paid jobs and 66.2% of lower-paid jobs.

Leeds Beckett University: 8.4% gender pay gap, with women making up 41.5% of higher-paid jobs and 61.2% of lower-paid jobs.

Leeds Arts University: 5.7% gender pay gap, with women making up 52.9% of higher-paid jobs and 60.3% of lower-paid jobs.

Nancy Gillen, Jonny Chard