What is pay equity?
Pay equity largely entails paying according to the amount of work done. This means that everyone, regardless of gender, race, tribe or beliefs is entitled to the same amount in wages, so long they do the same work.
At least, this is only right, considering that society should be one of justice and free of discrimination.
However, this is not the reality. In Nigeria, we find that there usually is a disparity in the way men and women are being paid.
Unequal pay often occurs as a result of deep-seated societal discrimination. It happens and thrives in societies that hold misogynistic beliefs that men should earn more than women. While this belief and the practice that it leads to is harmful to women, it could also affect organisations that have them entrenched in their culture.
One thing is certain: when women realise that they are being paid lower than their male counterparts, they are going to feel aggrieved. And understandably so. For the employee, this could cause disharmony within their teams. And they could also begin to lose any sense of trust they had towards the company and their coworkers.
Some organisations have policies that outrightly ban conversations about pay between workers in an attempt to curb any conflict that might result from such information. However, it is neither an effective nor healthy solution to gag employees, as they will still have that conversation.
The only right way forward is to create a safer environment in your organisation by closing the pay gap henceforth.
How to promote pay equity in your organisation
As explained above, the pay gap in many organisations derives from societal bias and sentiments that have found their way into the company structure. Therefore, in order to maintain an equitable payment system, management would have to tackle unequal pay and the issues that may arise from it at the source.
Conduct pay analysis
Pay audit or analysis allows your organisation to see if there are any discrepancies in their pay structure and to address them. If any gaps are found, consult the team leads and human resources department and ensure that those gaps are closed immediately.
The first step in changing orientation is unlearning, then learning. Employees should have to unlearn their bias and learn that for a company to grow, they would have to ensure that they place the same value on every one of their employees regardless of gender, tribe,age or beliefs.
Make salaries transparent
Salary transparency is one effective way to put an end to unequal pay in your organisation. In lieu of the exact amount, you can always publish the salary range for a role.
Salary transparency also includes offering a breakdown of incentives and bonuses to employees so that they are aware of how they and their colleagues actually earn.
Promote female employees
An NBS report in Nigeria released in 2015 found that only 34.7% of senior positions are occupied by women. This is a wide margin that shows that women are not being placed in positions where they can make decisions about their own affairs. If organisational structures continue being that lopsided, it would be more difficult to break the bias and ensure equitable pay for all employees.
Hire an efficient human resources team
For many of these aforementioned solutions, having a reliable human resources team would help ensure that all employee management concerns are taken care of. Your HR team could be in-house, or you can hire an external agency to take care of it.
An example of a brilliant HR agency is Klinsheet Consulting. They offer IT solutions for HR, and operate an automated system, ensuring that your employee management is absolutely taken care of. Operating with notable clients and partners, their delivery and credibility stand out amongst other consulting firms.