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Marks & Spencer reveals gender pay figures

Marks & Spencer is the latest fashion retailer to disclose its gender pay data.

According to the report from M&S, the mean hourly pay rate for the retailer’s female staff is 12.3% lower than their male counterparts – 3.3% lower on a median basis.

The high street retailer also reported that bonuses are on average 53.4% higher (15.9% median) for male employees, which M&S says reflects that 77% of its female staff work part time and are paid bonuses on a pro-rata basis. 

The report echoes figures released by several high street retailers, including John Lewis and White Stuff, and demonstrates the higher level of senior male employees. 

Women make up 72% of M&S’s 85,209 employees, and the majority of them work at an entry level where part time and flexible working is more prevalent. Some 67 out of 157 store managers are female and three women sit on the retailer’s 10-strong board. 

M&S has set a target of reducing its 2017 non-demographic gender pay gap by at least 10% over the next two years, and 25% by 2025. 

The UK average gender pay gap is 17.4% by mean and 18.4% by median, according to the Office for National Statistics ASHE 2017 and the retail average is 16.4%.

The retailer said of the results: “While it’s positive that our gender pay gap is lower than the UK average, the issues at play are complicated, and we believe it’s much more important to focus on taking meaningful action to drive equality and inclusivity rather than simply the numbers themselves. That’s why, as part of Plan A 2025, we had already set out ambitions to extend our UK pay gap monitoring and reporting to include ethnicity, disability and age (where held) and where possible, take action to close any gap. That said, we know there is more we can do. We will continue to annually publish our gender pay figures and report against our goals.”

All businesses with more than 250 staff are legally required to report their gender pay disparity to the government by 4 April this year.

To date, New Look, White Stuff, John Lewis, Phase Eight and Moss Bros have published gender pay gap figures.

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