Almost half (49%) of employees would ask for a pay rise or look for a new job if they found out for certain that colleagues at the same level were paid more.
The finding, from a recent poll of 1,148 UK workers commissioned by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), comes as the Equality Act comes into force tomorrow, preventing pay secrecy clauses being enforceable in certain circumstances.
Employees will now be able to able to break these so-called ‘gagging clauses’ to discuss pay with colleagues, providing this is done to establish if they are being discriminated against.
Michael Rendell, head of HR consulting at PwC, said: “Although the provisions in the Equality Act banning gagging clauses were watered down considerably in the final drafting of the legislation, the new rules are put of the growing culture and regulatory drive for greater disclosure around pay.
“Given this environment, it is all the more important employers can justify or remove any potential disparities in salaries among people at similar levels.
Our poll of workers shows the importance individuals attach to the perceived ‘fairness’ of pay and the risk of losing good employees if these differences are not addressed.
The Equality Act demonstrates how seriously the government is taking this issue.”
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