Just a quick update for any employer currently preparing its gender pay gap report for 2020/21.
As you may have seen, the Equality and Human Rights Commission has confirmed that “due to the continued effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, enforcement action against employers failing to report their gender pay gap will start on 5 October 2021.”
In other words, affected employers will still be obliged to report their GPG data for the 2020/21 reporting year, but they are effectively being given an extra six months within which to do this, as the EHRC will not take any enforcement action before then. The EHRC is nonetheless still “encouraging” affected employers to submit their data before this date, though without any obvious incentive or sanction one way or the other. At the moment, with less than a month to go before the normal 4 April reporting deadline for private sector employers, only 903 employers have reported their data for the year 2020/21. That’s less than 10% of the number that would normally be expected to report. Although these things are often left until the last moment anyway, that does suggest that this extension will come as a merciful relief to very many hard-pressed employers and HR teams already up against multiple legal and practical issues around the return to the workplace.
If you are preparing your gender pay gap reporting statistics at the moment, do be aware that the government updated its guidance in December 2020 and it now sets out how employers should treat for GPG reporting purposes any employees who were on furlough on the snapshot date of 5 April 2020. See our previous alerts here and here on the background to these changes, how the guidance has changed and the issues for employers to consider when preparing their reports.