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WCI, Inc
March 27, 2024

Equal pay in 2024

In recognition of America’s observation of Equal Pay Day on March 12, SHRM released its “Equal Pay Day 2024: What Happens in the Workplace” research as a reminder of the progress that still needs to be made toward workplace pay equity. The study concluded that 75 percent of organizations regularly audit for pay equity. Despite this commitment, while gender is accounted for in 80 percent of pay equity audits, race and age are only included 68 percent and 62 percent of the time respectively. This highlights a disparity between demographics in how pay equity is evaluated and underlines the need for continued progress.

“Each year, SHRM recognizes Equal Pay Day by conducting pivotal research on how the issue of pay equity is being addressed in organizations,” said Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., SHRM-SCP, President and CEO, SHRM. “Our findings suggest a strong awareness of pay equity issues among workplaces, while also uncovering a lack of training and unity among HR departments regarding this topic. We hope our efforts to bring awareness to this dichotomy will inspire organizations to take action toward pay equity among all demographics.”

Key findings from the 2024 survey include:

  • The average American HR professional is confident about their organization’s commitment to pay equity. However, people managers are often left out of this discussion.
    • 81 percent of HR professionals trust that their organization pays workers equally regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, disability status, age and sexual orientation.
    • Although people managers are important advocates for the equal pay of the employees who report to them, only 68 percent of people managers are trained on how to make business-related pay decisions, and only 36 percent are trained on the importance of pay equity.
  • HR professionals were presented several different scenarios in which pay inequality may or may not have been present, allowing their responses to demonstrate the variation in how HR departments define and address pay inequality. The findings suggest that HR departments are less likely to take action for cases of pay inequality that don’t display a disparity between genders.
    • In one scenario, two female workers had lower pay than two male workers with the same performance rating. 91 percent of respondents answered that they would be at least somewhat likely to take action, with 76 percent of that group saying they would award raises to the two women. The remaining 23 percent of this group said they would evaluate other factors, such as experience and tenure, before awarding a raise.
    • Meanwhile, another scenario featured four female workers with the same job performance ratings, in which two were being paid less than the other two. This time, only 66 percent of the survey population reported that they would be at least somewhat likely to take action, and only 57 percent of that group reported that they would give the lower-paid women a raise.

Source: SHRM.

From WCI's HR Answers Now ©2024 CCH Incorporated and its affiliates. All rights reserved.

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