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HL Gender Pay Gap Report 2019

We are making good progress on our action plan but our gender pay gap is not yet where I want it to be. The main reason continues to be the larger numbers of men in senior positions compared to women, typical of tech heavy financial services businesses. Cultural change of this type takes time.

We need to do more to create more opportunities for women to progress their careers. Our action plan focuses on doing just this. Increasing the proportion of women in senior roles will reduce our gender pay gap over time.

Diversity and inclusion, and giving an equal opportunity to everyone who wishes to progress their career at HL are all extremely important to me.

We are committed to making improvements and to supporting all colleagues who wish to progress their careers regardless of gender or background. We want everyone to thrive, develop and progress based upon what they do rather than anything else.

Our clients come from all walks of life, so to understand and meet their needs, our workforce should reflect the diversity of the people we are here to serve.

We also hope that by playing our part as a diverse and inclusive employer, we can help contribute positively to societal change in our local community.

CHRIS HILL, CEO

I’m proud to chair a Board which is committed to diversity and inclusion. Diversity is a far wider subject than just gender and embracing difference is at the heart of how we look after the differing needs of our clients.

DEANNA OPPENHEIMER, Non-executive chair

Understanding the pay gap

This is HL’s second gender pay gap (GPG) report, covering pay at HL on the snapshot date of 5 April 2018. Gender pay legislation requires employers with more than 250 staff to publish their gender pay gap.

The GPG measures the difference between men’s and women’s earnings across the business by expressing the percentage difference between men and women’s average pay.

For example, if the average man’s pay was £20 per hour and average woman’s pay was £17 per hour, women would earn 85% of the amount men earn, giving a gender pay gap of 15%.

This is different to equal pay which refers to men and women receiving equal pay for equal work. HL has a clear, fair, and gender-neutral approach to pay and we operate on an equal pay basis across the company.

Our progress to date

  • Commitment from the Board and senior leadership to fairness, equality, diversity and inclusion
  • HL plc Board has a female Chair and four women on the Board
  • HL is a member of the 30% club and has signed the Women in Finance Charter, both committing to increase the number of women in senior positions
  • Fourth in the FTSE 100 ranking of Women on Boards and in Leadership - Hampton-Alexander Review
  • Greater support for women who take career breaks, through improved maternity and returner programmes and flexible working

The gender pay gap at HL

When comparing the average pay, two types of measure are used. The "median“ is the "middle" value in a list of numbers. If all HL colleagues lined up in a female line and a male line, in order of pay from highest to lowest, the median gender pay gap compares the pay of the female in the middle of their line to the pay of the middle man. The "mean" is where you add up all the rates of pay and then divide by the number of people.

The data provided is accurate and has been independently reviewed.

Pay and bonus gap difference between male and female UK colleagues

Mean (%) Median (%)
Hourly rate of pay 13.7 20.4
Bonus pay 70.6 56.1

Proportion of male and female UK colleagues in each pay quartile

Male Female
Upper quartile 79% 21%
Upper middle quartile 72% 28%
Lower middle quartile 60% 40%
Lower quartile 56% 44%

Our Mean GPG has improved due to an increase in females at role levels 3 to 6 and in female Non-Executive Directors. However, the Median GPG has widened. This is as a result of fewer females in senior roles combined with an overall increase in headcount at role levels 3-6 with more females than males joining at role levels 4-6.

Our Mean Bonus GPG has improved marginally and the Median Bonus GPG more so. The move away from centralised decision-making towards business led proposals and calibration is working. However, the bonus gap remains significant due to those on maternity leave receiving pro-rated bonus awards and the impact of incentive schemes for those outside of discretionary bonus such as the financial advisers, where bonus payments are generally higher than discretionary awards and the participants are predominantly male.

The proportion of females to males receiving a bonus has remained static in 2018 at approx. 87%.

The proportion of females has increased in the upper quartile -17% to 21%. The other proportions have remained static.

Bonus payments

Proportion of eligible males/females who received a bonus

Proportion of males/females who received a bonus payment

We have a low proportion of colleagues receiving a bonus as at 5th April 2018, because of the rate of growth of the business and the number of new colleagues who joined us and were not, at that point, eligible for a bonus.

If we look at the colleagues who were eligible for a bonus at that date, the proportion of men and women who received a bonus is very similar (92.6% vs 88.7%).

Why there is a gender pay gap

We have a greater proportion of men in senior roles as you can see below. These senior roles have higher salaries and higher bonuses. Therefore the average amount men are paid is higher.

Proportion of male and female UK colleagues per role level

As at 5th April 2018

There are a number of reasons why gender pay gaps have happened over time. We know that in the past there have been greater numbers of men working in the financial services, fin tech and tech industries compared to women and this has led to disproportionate numbers of men in senior roles and we can see this is also true of HL. The diversity of our senior leadership team today reflects the historic make up of our workforce.

We have an action plan to increase the proportion of women in senior roles. We expect the gender pay gap to reduce and we are committed to making improvements and to supporting all colleagues who wish to progress their careers regardless of gender or background.

Our gender pay gap action plan

In March 2018 we set out a comprehensive gender pay gap action plan. The primary aim is to increase the numbers of women in senior positions through six themes:

  1. Commitment from the senior leadership team
    • Commitment from the Board, Chris Hill as CEO and the senior leadership to fairness, equality, diversity and inclusion
    • HL plc Board has a female Chair and four women on the Board
    • HL is a member of the 30% club, a signatory of the Women in Finance Charter, both committing to increase the number of women in senior positions
    • 4th in the FTSE 100 ranking of Women on Boards and in Leadership - Hampton-Alexander Review November 2018
    • HL is a founding signatory of the Bristol Equality Charter
  2. Improvements to the recruitment and promotion processes
  3. Improvements to working practices to support parents including flexible working, support for career breaks and improved maternity and returner programmes
  4. Improvements to learning and development, through mentoring and leadership programmes
  5. The introduction of seven HL networks to support diversity and inclusion, health and wellbeing in the workplace
  6. Working with peers and industry groups to develop best practice
Diversity and inclusion are extremely important to me.

I believe in building a culture and environment that attracts, values and retains people from all walks of life, regardless of background and beliefs. The diversity of thought, experience and creativity will help us to understand and serve our increasingly diverse range of clients.

CHRIS HILL, CEO and executive committee member responsible for our diversity and inclusion strategy

It is disappointing we have not made more progress on our gender pay gap, but I can see our action plan is making progress.

Over time we expect the pay gap between female and male employees to reduce further as we recruit and develop female talent across the business.

HEATHER COOPER, Chief People Officer and director responsible for Corporate Social Responsibility