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Policy changes to watch out for in 2018

Drapers rounds up the key policy changes due to affect the retail industry in 2018.

Gender pay gap reporting

From April, new rules introduced to tackle the gender pay gap will require companies with more than 250 employees publish annual figures breaking down pay. Businesses must upload a report onto a government website, as well as their own, detailing: mean and median gender pay gaps, the proportion of men and women receiving a bonus, and the proportion of men and women in each quartile of the company’s pay structure. At the time of writing, just three fashion retailers (Hugo Boss UK, Oliver Bonas and the Lloyd Shoe Company) have published their figures, giving the rest of the industry a short window to collate and release their numbers. 

General Data Protection Regulation

The General Data Protection Regulation, a new European Union initiative designed to increase the data protection rights of EU citizens, comes into force in May 2018. It requires more transparency from companies about how they are using personal data. Retailers who fail to comply will face hefty fines of up to €20m (£17.8m) or 4% of annual global turnover, whichever is greater.

National Living Wage increase

The National Living wage for over-25s will increase by 4.4% in April. The minimum wage for workers over 25 years of age in the UK is currently £7.50/hour and will rise to £7.83. 

Readers' comments (1)

  • In fact, Hugo Boss UK published their figures three times — originally reporting a mean and median pay gap of zero, before a Financial Times analysis demonstrated that the figures submitted were statistically implausible. They went on to make a further two submissions, with dramatically differing data.

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