British workers call for more pay transparency

UK workers want greater pay transparency, according to new research. Fewer than half (42%) of British employees are aware of their total compensation, under a third (31%) know salary ranges for different positions in their company and just 8% are familiar with how salary ranges differ by location. The study carried out by beqom, a cloud-based compensation management software provider, also found that:

• When asked which level of compensation transparency they would most like from their company, 39% of employees want to understand their total comp, 26% want to understand salary ranges for different positions and 8% want to know how salary ranges differ by location.

• More women (41%) than men (36%) would like to understand their total compensation, but more men (31%) than women (24%) want to understand salary ranges for different positions in their company.

beqom’s 2022 Compensation and Culture Report uncovered how the changing workplace landscape has altered employee perceptions around benefits, total rewards, transparency and pay equity in the last year.

The company’s research also reveals that more than a third (37 per cent) of British employees don’t think their current company pays employees fairly.

“At a time when many workers are struggling to make ends meet, employers need to focus now more than ever on establishing pay transparency within their organisations,” said Tanya Jansen, co-founder of beqom. “Pay transparency offered directly by management, rather than being whispered among colleagues, is a win-win scenario. Aside from strengthening trust between employees and employers, it improves employee motivation and performance, and reduces the risk of losing top talent who do not believe they are being fairly compensated. Transparency also helps reduce the expense of hiring replacements, which can cost as much as one-third of a former worker’s salary to rehire.”

Additional findings from the report show that:

SME Publications/ SME XPO 2024

Employees Don’t Feel They’re Paid Fairly – Lack of Transparency Plays a Big Role

• More than a third (37 per cent) of employees don’t think their company pays employees fairly. The majority (34 per cent) of those employees think their company does not pay its workers equitably because they know from conversations with peers in the same role at their company that they aren’t paid the same amount.

• Nearly one in five (18 per cent) think their company fails to pay its employees what they are due because there seems to be deliberate secrecy around the disclosure of pay and/or bonuses, while 31 per cent think it’s because their pay is lower than the same role at a competitor.

Employees Are Learning More About Salary Discrepancies in Their Company, and Taking Action to Change Their Own Compensation

• More than two-thirds (69 per cent) of UK employees have talked to a colleague about their salaries in the last year and more than a third (35%) learned a colleague in their equivalent role with similar experience is making more than them.

• More than a third (35 per cent) of employees have asked for a raise or promotion in the last year, with Gen Z (53 per cent) the most likely to have asked for a raise or promotion, compared to Millennials (33 per cent), Gen X (27 per cent) or Baby Boomers (17 per cent).

To learn more about beqom’s 2022 Compensation & Culture report and view additional findings, download the full report.

SME Publications/ SME XPO 2024