RICS survey says staff think pay gap will shrink

Nearly half (46 per cent) of construction workers predict the gender pay gap will be less than 15 per cent by April 2018, according to a OnePoll survey commissioned by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), who also argued more needs to be done. With the ONS stating the national

average pay gap at 18.1 per cent in 2016, RICS claims its findings suggest the construction sector is likely to be leading the way in closing the gap. More than one in 10 respondents

think that there will be no gender pay gap at all by April 2018, which marks the end of the UK Government’s mandatory gender pay reporting period. However, this positive sentiment was absent in the capital, with Londoners working in the construction sector predicting an average pay gap of 21 per cent. Despite a positive outlook towards the

pay gap, the study noted the work necessary to achieve parity. 30 per cent of women surveyed think sexism holds them

back from pursuing senior roles in construction, while 38 per cent of men believe their skills are better suited to the sector than women. Chief executive officer of RICS, Sean

Tompkins said that while the sector’s optimism over the gender pay gap is “great to see,” the findings highlight “that achieving gender equality in the construction sector requires significant commitment from organisations.” “Encouragingly,” he continued, “there is

a collective agreement from over a third of both men and women across the industry that companies are not doing enough to attract females in the sector. “The findings reveal that is primarily

the responsibility of individual organisations, to invest in schemes and nurture more inclusive cultures that support women to hold more senior roles in the construction industry.” Tompkins concluded: “People often

come at tackling diversity from the perspective of it being an issue to be

addressed. RICS believes it should be approached from the other way round; diversity and an inclusive culture where you feel entirely comfortable being yourself in the workplace, has to be embedded as part of your business strategy and DNA, because you simply cannot afford to not have a diverse workforce today and for the future. Increasingly, clients will expect it, and to win the war for talent you will need a diversity of role models.” 42 per cent of those surveyed believe the

companies need to invest more in training their existing female employees. Equally, those in the sector want to see businesses investing in the future pipeline of talent to build a diverse workforce, with 40 per cent recognising that companies need to invest more in encouraging young girls to pursue a career in construction, so that more women enter the profession.


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