Digital industrial organisation General Electric has reported a 8.8% consolidated mean gender pay gap for fixed hourly pay across its 13 UK legal entities.
The organisation has reported its gender pay gap data in line with the government’s gender pay gap reporting regulations and ahead of the private sector submission deadline of 4 April 2018.
The gender pay gap reporting regulations require organisations with 250 or more employees to publish the difference between both the mean and median hourly rate of pay for male and female full-time employees; the difference between both the mean bonus pay and median bonus pay for male and female employees; the proportions of male and female employees who were awarded bonus pay; and the proportions of male and female full-time employees in the lower, lower middle, upper middle and upper quartile pay bands.
General Electric’s consolidated median gender pay gap for fixed hourly pay is 14.9%.
Its mean gender pay gap for bonuses paid in the last year is -12.4%, and the median gender pay gap for bonus pay is -1.5%. Over this period, 79.9% of female employees received a bonus payment compared to 78% of male employees.
Less than a fifth (18%) of employees in the highest pay quartile at General Electric are female, compared to 14% in the second quartile, 17% in the third quartile and 32% in the lowest pay quartile.
General Electric attributes its gender pay gap to the fact that there is a nationwide underrepresentation of women working in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM)-related fields. The organisation has therefore implemented a new initiative, called Balancing the Equation, which aims to increase the number of women working in STEM job roles at General Electric by 2020, as well as improving the representation of women in its technical entry-level leadership programmes.
The organisation will also continue to promote its women’s network, which provides visible role models and helps champion the development and promotion of women at General Electric. The women’s network regularly hosts training and networking events for staff and also runs organisation-wide initiatives such as Women in Technology, Commercial Women and Women in Operations.
To further address its gender pay gap, General Electric will hold managers accountable for creating a culture shift that facilitates openness around flexible working opportunities, and the organisation will also adopt a renewed focus on increasing the awareness of its family-friendly policies, such as shared parental leave, enhanced maternity, paternity and adoption leave. It will additionally highlight specific policies on flexible working arrangements, for example, job sharing.
Furthermore, General Electric will maintain its work around its GirlsGetSET initiative, which runs STEM-related activities during the course of the academic year in order to educate students about the career opportunities within STEM subjects. Linked to this, the organisation’s flagship engineering leadership programme for early career professionals, the Edison Engineering Development programme, had a 66% female intake for 2017.
General Electric states in its gender pay gap report that it regularly reviews its approach to pay equity.
The report reads: “As a digital industrial [organisation], we rely on highly-skilled [employees] from STEM-related fields. The UK-wide underrepresentation of females in these fields from school age through to later career is well documented and [General Electric] also recognises the importance of achieving more balanced gender representation within its workforce. [General Electric] recognises that it is not possible to provide overnight solutions but we are fully committed to leading and accelerating this change with continued vigour and focus.”
A spokesperson at General Electric said: “[General Electric] employs more than 15,000 people in the UK and we regularly review our approach to pay equity. Our pay gap of 8.8% is below the UK average and we are confident that we offer equal pay between our male and female populations undertaking comparable work. That said, we recognise there is more to do, and we have already set ambitious targets to increase the number of women in [General Electric]’s STEM based roles where our results reflect the UK-wide underrepresentation of women in these fields.”