Pay Gap

Gender Pay Gap Reporting: How does it work in the EU?

05 Mar, 2019

Companies and public bodies have to report analysis to governments or to authorized control services (depending on countries). The modern approach that provides instant insights into pay and wage equity is pay gap survey & analysis.


What is Pay Survey?


Pay gap survey & analysis for companies is a means to discover, prevent and revise unfair pay gaps between different segments of employees, for instance, men and women.  


A pay gap is illegal in a number of European countries if it is based on the following reasons: gender, sexual orientation, gender-crossing identity or expression, ethnicity, religion or other belief, disability or age. And here we try to give a short overview of how laws on equality and discrimination work in different countries and consider some Specifics and requirements.





Analysis is required: all companies and organisations and starting from 10 employees a written analysis and action plan is required

How often:  Annually

Law into force: 2017



  • The work on the pay mapping, analysis and establishment of a special action plan is included in the employer's obligations to take active measures to promote gender equality.

  • Failure to fulfil these obligations can ultimately lead to the Committee against Discrimination following submission by the Discrimination Ombudsman instructing the employer to fulfil the obligations in the event of a breach.

  • If an employer has more than 10 employees, a written action plan must be established. There, the results of the survey and analysis are reported, as well as which salary adjustments and other measures need to be taken to achieve equal pay for work that is considered equal or equivalent.

  • For employees, an E-education platform is available for starting step by step pay mapping and analysis of salary differences in organisation. Read more here



 The United Kingdom


Analysis is required from: 25 employees or more

How often:  Annually

Law into force: 2017


  • The employer must publish their data and written statement within a year of their organisation’s ‘snapshot date’. Data organisations must publish

  • The information has to be available online for at least 3 years. In case the organisation has not got an official company website the data should be published on the intranet and/or parent company website.

  • Publishing their plans by Organisations on tackling the gender pay gap is highly encouraged.  It shows the commitment to gender equality in the workplace.





Analysis is required from:

  • 1 January 2019 for companies with more than 250 employees,

  • 2020 for those with 50 to 249 employees


How often:  Annually

Law into force: 2014 (new requirements from 1st January 2019)



  • Because of disagreement over the execution of the law, additional funds were released by the State for 2018 dedicated to this cause. Most importantly, a three-year action plan for empowering gender quality law was presented by the government.

  • Now the measuring instrument is being considered - a software already used by Switzerland since 2006.  It will enable French companies to identify "unexplained" differences between women and men and to evaluate their wage policies.

  • Once the differences are noted, the company will have three years to comply and eliminate them. A catch-up envelope will have to be devoted to correct these inequalities.





Analysis is required from: 25 employees or more

How often:  every 3 years

Law into force:  2017



  • Iceland is thus the first country in the world where it is mandatory for employers to prove that they pay equal pay.

  • The companies must complete the certification until the end of 2021.

  • Companies must renew certification every three years. Organisations that do not obtain or renew the certification can receive daily fines.

  • The University of Iceland provides education on equal pay certification and offers courses. Read more about it





Analysis is required from: 200 employees or more

How often:  every 3 years

Law into force: 2018



  • If employees find that they receive an unfairly low wage in comparison, they can claim a higher pay.

  • Enterprises with a size of more than 500 employees who, according to the German Commercial Code, have to prepare a management report, must also inform them about equal pay and equality in the future.





In 2018 several parties in the Netherlands started preparing a legislative proposal that requires companies of more than 50 employees to offer equal pay for equal work


How often:  every 3 years

Law entered into force: - the bill is submitted for consideration


  • It is supposed to be a certification system that must be implemented for companies. They will have to publish their employees' salaries data every three years.

  • It is planned that companies that have problems with equal pay for an equal amount of work, will get a limited timespan to improve this situation. Otherwise, they will be fined.

  • The parties drew inspiration from Iceland and Germany for this proposal.



How can the right software help in Pay gap analysis?


Modern tools nowadays can make a detailed analysis of your data without time-killing manual work, they break down your data to better understand the reasons for the gap. With the example of Heartpace Pay you can get to know more solutions for automatization Pay Analysis.


The core features are instant reports of the pay gaps across the organisation. Just prepare and upload your company salary data and all bonuses and benefits. Then in just a few seconds, you will get instant visualised data with all insights including:


  • Analysis of similar positions within the organisation

  • Analysis of positions with the same level of complexity

  • Analysis of pay gap by dominant groups in the organisation


You’re instantly on your way to exploring trends, bonus programmes with easy-to-understand reports and visuals.



Why Pay gap analysis is important for employers? 


  • Providing equal workplace where there are no unreasonable pay differences between men and women.

  • Economically beneficial with correctly set wages

  • Good basis for future pay reviews.

  • Strengthen Employer brand and culture of transparency and equality

  • Work in accordance with the law of your country (in case it is mandatory for you)




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