W H Smith doubles number of women receiving bonuses in latest gender pay gap report

W H Smith doubles number of women receiving bonuses in latest gender pay gap report

W H Smith has doubled the number of women receiving bonus pay as the retailer reports no gender pay gap for the second year running. 

The median gender pay gap - the difference in pay between the middle-ranking man and the middle-ranking woman - for the WH Smith Group UK as a whole, is 0% for the second year running, better than the UK national average of 17.9%. The mean gender pay gap narrowed from 20% in 2017 to 19.7% in 2018. The median bonus gap narrowed from 48.7% in 2017 to 0% in 2018, according to the latest data submitted to the government ahead of the 4th April deadline. 

Looking at the mean hourly rate for W H Smith Retail Holdings Limited, which covers travel and high street bookselling, the retailer has cut the gap by 0.4% to 20.2%. In 2017 women earned on average 79p for every £1 earned by men. In 2018, this increased to 80p. 

C.e.o. Stephen Clarke said: “The Group Board is committed to improving the gender balance across the business. We are making progress however, we know that improving gender balance will take time and require sustained focus over the long term.” 

When it comes to bonuses for the retail arm, the number of women receiving bonuses has doubled from 15% to 30%. The number of men receiving bonuses has also increased with 35% of men taking home bonus pay in 2018 compared to 19% of men in 2017. 

The gap has narrowed for women’s median bonus pay which is now 0% lower than men’s compared to 51% lower last year. In 2018 women’s mean bonus pay is 88.5% lower than men’s compared to 87.9% last year. 

Anthony Lawrence, Group HR director, said: “From our analysis we know that the biggest contributing factor to our mean gender pay gap and mean bonus pay gap is the number of executive positions held by men. At W H Smith, women make up 65% of the workforce and 27% of the senior management team. We know that our gender pay gap will only disappear when we have more women participating in senior management and leadership roles, and at W H Smith, we are on a pathway to make this happen.” 

W H Smith said its taking steps to address the gender imbalance with key initiatives including developing a pipeline of women ready for promotion, internal networking and development programmes, learning and development weeks and using gender balance shortlists for external recruitment at senior executive level. 

All employers with more than 250 staff are required by law to report their gender pay gaps under the Equality Act 2010 Regulations for 2017. Few have submitted their date before the April deadline, with the vast majority of publishers and retailers in the book industry yet to do so