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The importance of equal pay and career progression in senior procurement roles

By Scott Dance, Director of Hays Procurement & Supply Chain

Differences in gender pay is a constant topic of discussion, particularly in the UK with the first instance of mandatory gender pay gap reporting coming into force in April 2018. Even though salary discrepancies have narrowed, recent research shows that there are still large pay gaps occurring in senior procurement roles.

Considerable pay gaps within senior procurement roles

Within procurement, from purchasing assistants to category managers, the gap in pay between men and women tends to be between 2% - 7%. While work still needs to be done on continuing to close this gap, the largest discrepancy occurs in senior level roles, such as head of procurement and supply chain directors, with men earning 25% more than women.

The narrowing of salary gaps at lower levels indicates that women entering the profession are receiving salaries more in line with their male counterparts, with the difference at senior levels perhaps being an ongoing consequence of historical disparity.

Career progression

With 76% of women saying salary is important when considering a new role and 70% considering career progression opportunities important, it’s clear that employers need to continue enabling women to reach the top levels of seniority and adequately reward them for their expertise.

However, the Hays Ireland Gender Diversity Report 2017 found that 98% of women across a range of professions, perceive barriers to their career progression, compared to 80% of men. Of these, 77% of women say this is to a great extent, compared to 20% of men.

One way to close the gender pay gap in procurement is to focus on improving career progression opportunities. Communication is key to employers understanding the career aspirations of their workforce and helping both men and women to progress their career, as well as enabling professionals to better understand the opportunities available to them.

Organising regular one-to-one meetings to proactively discuss career progression opportunities and put a plan in place can enable women in procurement to progress to more senior roles, and in turn help continue to close the gender pay gap at all seniority levels in the profession.

To find out more information on gender gap pay and gender diversity in the workplace, request your copy of the Hays Ireland Gender Diversity Report 2017.

To find out more, or to discuss your recruitment needs, please contact your local consultant

About this author

Scott joined Hays in 2002 as a Trainee Consultant, and is now Director of Hays Procurement & Supply Chain. With over 15 years’ experience, Scott advises clients on workforce management solutions, works with the industry institute CIPS as a trusted knowledge partner, and provides strategic leadership to Hays’ procurement and supply chain recruitment experts.

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