Can transparency in the workforce go too far?

Can transparency in the workforce go too far?
Posting date:08 Apr 2019

Listed companies across the UK were expected to turn in their second Gender Pay Gap Report last week and it’s all everyone seems to be talking about. 

Last year was the birth of the initiative and despite taking some time for all eligible companies to comply, the Government issued a statement to say they had achieved a 100% completion rate by August 2018. 

It is now thought of as a massive step forward in the fight for gender equality which has got many asking - Should this be replicated amongst other protected characteristics, or is this asking too much of large companies? 

The trend of transparency is growing and the Government have now revealed plans to launch an Ethnicity Pay Gap Report and a CEO Pay Report whereby the leaders of listed companies with more than 250 employees must declare the pay ratio that exists between them and their workforce. While these out of context sound like wonderful ways to improve diversity, the logistics could prove tricky.

The Ethnicity Pay Gap Report will require all employees to self-report their chosen ethnicity. Listed companies could be deemed culprits of a non-inclusive culture where employees do not feel comfortable declaring their ethnicity. But, what about those who simply deem it to be private, irrelevant to their work, and an unnecessary box-ticking exercise? 

Companies could be prosecuted for the free choice of their workforce. My question to you is, should we be doing more to highlight the existing pay gap in hopes of creating positive change, or does this put the privacy and free choice of employees at risk?