Any companies with 250 or more employees must publish their gender pay gap data each year. We don’t meet this threshold but we recognise the wider societal importance of equality and diversity in the workplace so are happy to share the data that we collect and review each year as part of our business review process. We value our people as the most important asset in achieving our company goals and want to ensure transparency and create an environment that our team can thrive in.

At Nicholsons we carry out regular pay and benefits audits, training and evaluations. We’re confident that our gender pay gap is not because we pay men and women differently for the same or equivalent work. In fact, there are more female employees in senior roles, as well as more females in the more junior roles. Instead, our gender pay gap is because men and women work in different roles and those roles have different salaries.

Nicholsons gender pay gap report – March 2021

Nicholsons has 52 members of staff, 22 Males and 30 Females.
At Nicholsons, a woman earns 96p for every £1 a man earns on average.

Our mean
gender pay gap is 4%

Our median
gender pay gap is 2%

Our mean
gender bonus gap is 6%

Our median
gender bonus gap is 11%

UK gender pay gap widened

Analysis by The Times* reports that the gender pay gap has widened across the UK economy in 2020-21, reaching 11.1% (up from 10.6% last year)

The latest figures show that a woman earns 89p for every £1 a man earns on average. The pay gap widened to 11.1 per cent in 2021, up from 10.6 per cent last year, 9.5 per cent in 2019 and 9.3 per cent in 2018.

In the accountancy sector specifically, the problem tends to be with promoting and retaining women, rather than bringing them into the profession in the first place. Of the Big Four in 2019**, KPMG’s median gender pay gap started the most conversations as it had risen to 28 percent, compared with PwC’s 18 percent, Deloitte’s at 16 percent, and Ernst & Young’s which fell from 19.5 percent to 18.9 percent.

Emma Murray commented, “In a sector where gender pay reporting is generally not positive, we are delighted with the results of our 2021 audit. Our decision making around remuneration feels fair and driven around what data is telling us about an individuals’ performance and this report appears to back that up.”

Taking steps

The importance of the gender pay gap is something that all businesses should take seriously, and there are a number of legalities and steps they can take. Legally, men and women must receive equal pay for;

  • the same or broadly similar work;
  • work rated as equivalent under a job evaluation scheme; or
  • work of equal value.

Businesses need to commit to equal opportunities and equal treatment for all employees, regardless of sex, race, religion or belief, age, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy/maternity, sexual orientation, gender reassignment or disability. These protected characteristics are in place to ensure no one faces discrimination.

Setting out a clear policy of paying employees equally for the same or equivalent work, regardless of their sex (or anything else listed above) creates a level playing field.

At Nicholsons, we:

  • carry out regular pay and benefits audits;
  • provide regular equal pay training for all managers and staff members who are involved in pay reviews; and
  • evaluate job roles and pay grades to ensure fairness.
  • ensure equal opportunity for every job role/vacancy regardless of gender, disability or any of the other protected characteristics
  • ensure the environment is suitable and adaptable to all disabilities and genders

A matter of culture

Creating a culture of inclusion and commitments around the gender pay gap and gender equality demonstrates to employees a business’s commitment and creates an atmosphere they can flourish in, and ultimately drives success and growth. A company’s culture is becoming even more important to potential candidates, and demonstrating a commitment to issues such as the gender pay gap can really show them what kind of business you are.

The culture at Nicholsons is something that we’re very proud of, but creating this culture hasn’t happened overnight. It’s taken a consistent effort to create and maintain. Alongside a positive working environment and regular performance and career conversations, there is also plenty of wellbeing and personal development opportunities. The hybrid and flexible working on offer allows team members with families to find a better work life balance, and we find the split between males and females of team members and Directors gives us a good balance to ensure inclusion, but also encourages different perspectives and ideas.

Richard Hallsworth commented “Equality and diversity is an influencer in our decision making at Nicholsons. The reasons behind why E&D are important in society are well publicised, but we firmly believe that a more inclusive and diverse culture drives business success. We are determined to ensure that E&D remains a key priority on our agenda and are committed to remain transparent in our reporting.”

It’s clear that flexible working has become commonplace, so it is important to monitor how all team members deliver their roles. Again, it’s important to have processes in place to support all team members working remotely, including regular reviews to ensure that they have everything they need to deliver their job requirements. We have implemented both a hybrid working, and flexible working policy which encourages team members to find a work life balance that works for them, giving them the best opportunity to achieve their potential.

Laura Reilly, Head of HR and Compliance at Nicholsons concluded, “We fully evaluate all pay scales annually as part of ongoing practices to ensure we remain an employer of choice, and reward our team members fairly. The report is encouraging as it shows that our gaps are minimal, and we see our mean and median pay gaps flip the other way. We are committed to diversity at Nicholsons and operate a meritocracy.”