Leading the way on equal pay

The City of Sydney is ahead of the majority of Australian public and private sector employers when it comes to gender pay equity, its latest annual review has shown.

The City’s 2016-17 gender pay equity review, prepared by Mercer Consulting, found an overall gender pay gap of -6.8 per cent – meaning more women employees are in higher paying jobs, organisation-wide.

When the City compared men and women at the same salary level, there was a gender pay gap of 2.8 per cent in favour of men.

According to the federal Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA), Australia’s national gender pay gap is currently 15.3 per cent. For public sector organisations, the gap is 10.8 per cent, and for private sector organisations it is 19.3 per cent.

The review also found the percentage of the City’s women employees who received a promotion has increased in recent years, and that women on average reported higher levels of satisfaction than men on issues including workplace flexibility, employee engagement and pay.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the City’s efforts to create an inclusive, diverse and equitable workforce mirrored its work building a fair and inclusive city for all.

“Sydney is one of the world’s most diverse cities, with more than 200 nationalities and people of all ages, incomes, genders, sexual orientations and religious beliefs,” the Lord Mayor said.

“As an organisation, we are committed to leading by example, which means ensuring we respect and value the diversity of our workforce, including the outstanding contribution women at all levels and across all areas of the City make on a daily basis.

“While we can still do more, I’m proud of the results of this year’s review, which put us ahead of the pack in terms of gender pay equity, not only within the public sector, but Australia-wide.”

The gender pay gap is the difference between women’s and men’s average weekly full-time equivalent earnings, expressed as a percentage of men’s earnings. The gap is influenced by a range of interrelated work, family and societal factors.

Pay equity is achieved when women and men receive equal pay for work of equal or comparable value. This means that women and men performing the same role at the same performance level are paid the same amount.

Under the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012, non-public sector organisations with over 100 employees must report annually against a number of gender equality indicators, including remuneration.

While councils are not required to report, the City started monitoring and reporting publicly on gender pay equity in 2015-16, making it the first local government organisation in Australia to do so.

City of Sydney CEO Monica Barone said the City was committed to continuing to improve gender equity within its workforce.

“Research shows that employers that respect and value the diversity brought by both women and men have the best chance of attracting and retaining a high performing workforce,” Ms Barone said.

“Having talented employees at all levels and across all areas of the organisation is critical to the City’s ability to lead, govern and serve our diverse and growing community.

“In order to ensure we retain talent and expertise, and that women are not held back because they have a family, we will continue to focus our efforts on improving workplace flexibility, including in senior roles, and building our management capability to lead a diverse and inclusive workplace.

“We are also investigating how we can attract and retain more women in roles that are traditionally held by men, and continue to develop more of our existing women employees into senior management roles.”

The City’s gender pay equity review is guided by the WGEA’s reporting framework for private sector organisations.

For more information, visit wgea.gov.au

For media inquiries or images, contact Media Team Leader Keeley Irvin.
Phone 0448 005 718 or email kirvin@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au

For interviews with Lord Mayor Clover Moore, phone 02 8974 4165 or email media@clovermoore.com.au