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Providing pay clarity and visibility: Getting your leaders, managers, and employees ready for the EU pay transparency directive – Part 2

July 5, 2023

In this video, Eva Jesmiatka and Tom Wooldridge continue discussing the communications you need to consider with different stakeholders.
Employee Experience|Ukupne nagrade
Pay Transparency Legislation
Providing pay clarity and visibility: Getting your leaders, managers, and employees ready for the EU pay transparency directive – Part 2

Eva Jesmiatka and Tom Wooldridge discuss the approach, planning and communications you could take with different stakeholders in an organization, from prospective hires, all the way through to organizations leaders, managers and employees.

You will need to think about the topics you need to cover with different stakeholder groups, what they need to know to help them understand how pay is being managed, the processes in place in your organization and what work of equal value means.

The video will include:

  • Different communication approaches for different audiences
  • How your reward strategy will play a key role in your communications approach.
  • What the gender pay gap and right to information will mean for employees under the EU Pay Transparency Directive.
  • How context will be a key part of your pay equity story.

This video is part of our series on “Providing Pay Clarity and Visibility” in which we take a deep dive into the EU Pay Transparency Directive; its impact on employers, employees and candidates; key preparatory activities; and enhancing education and communication on pay.

Video transcript

Providing pay clarity and visibility: Getting your leaders, managers, and employees ready for the EU pay transparency directive – Part 2

INTRO: Provisions to ensure equal pay for equal work have been in place for decades. But a step change has yet to happen. WTW provides employers with confidence that their pay and benefits are fair and equitable, not just today, but into tomorrow.


EVA JESMIATKA: Welcome to our next video on providing pay clarity and visibility. My name is Eva Jesmiatka. And I'm here today with my colleague, Tom Wooldridge. Tom, welcome back.

TOM WOOLDRIDGE: Thank you very much.

EVA JESMIATKA: This is part 2 of our video on getting leaders, managers, and employees ready for the EU pay transparency directive. In our part 1 of this video, we talked about the overall company narrative and communication that organizations need to think about. And we started talking about the different audience groups that companies need to plan for as well.

In today's video, I'm very keen to dive into a bit more detail on that. So let's start focusing on considering those different audience groups. How do companies go about engaging with those groups and planning for communication for them?

TOM WOOLDRIDGE: In terms of prospective employees, the things that you need to think about today are incorporating your D&I strategy into the prospective hire experience. So making sure that they understand that this is a priority for you as an organization. And then link to that something around how pay and reward are managed fair, consistently, equitably within your organization and current state. That's something you can do today.

In future, what we're going to need to get to is a very clear process for prospective employees around in advance of that first interview, how they get access to an initial pay level or salary ranges to make sure that they're clear on who has the ability to negotiate on pay so that halfway through an initial screening interview, where you might be talking to someone who's not a compensation manager, that the experience of having that conversation about pay and negotiating on pay is an uncomfortable one or what isn't aligned with where the organization needs to be in terms of the legislation.

Yeah. So that's the key things in terms of prospective hires. And for current employees, it is better education around everything associated with how reward is managed, and how equivalent work is defined. That's something that all organizations, ideally, should be doing already, but need to be doing if work of equal value isn't understood within your organization and you need to be clear with individuals around the leveling structure you've got in place or your grating structure that you've got in place. So that definition is understood.

And then you need to make sure that people are understanding how pay is managed, how your different incentive programs are managed, anything that will come into the definition of equal pay for equal work. That's something that everyone can do between now and the directive taking effect.

And then in addition to your narrative on pay equity, and your journey, and making sure that employees are taken along that journey with you, it's obviously the right to information under the directive. So being able to request average pay levels for workers in your category of work or similar work to what you're doing, and gender pay gaps for groups of people within that equivalent work.

The additional lens to that is you've got your company-wide gender pay gap reporting to deliver on as well. So you need to be very clear with employees around, obviously, the results but in addition to that, the context of the drivers for this. So going back to that narrative, the connection to your D,E &I strategy, the rationale for why this is important for you as an employer beyond just the legislative requirements. And then your response to your results as well.

So that's what you're doing in order to an aggregate level to make sure that the gaps are reduced within your organization. But then also, on a individual basis, where there are significant gaps that you need to make sure you've got a plan for how you remove those gaps.

EVA JESMIATKA: So maybe a few people who will be watching this video think like, that all make sense. But gosh, that is a lot of things to think about. And I know, Tom, that you are having a lot of conversations with your clients about how can you actually get there.

How are you helping organizations with getting there, like the North Star that you very helpfully drawn out? Can you share a bit more on that?

TOM WOOLDRIDGE: Yeah. So I guess, firstly, a lot of the components that are required to deliver on the directive aren't necessarily new. So we have always helped organizations to communicate their job leveling structures. We have always helped organizations to be clear on how pay is managed within their organizations, both managers and employees.

We have always helped organizations to introduce new incentives or help explain how the process of going from performance to an end reward within any type of incentive you can think of. So that's what we've always done.

What we're increasingly doing is helping with the planning for the directive, specifically. So understanding where employers are currently at in terms of the level of communication and education around pay and reward. And then also thinking specifically about the directive in a couple of years, and what they're going to need to disclose and communicate.

We're helping to plan through workshops like what that journey looks like for them, and then what they will communicate at each stage, and thinking about year 1, year 2, year 3. That's what we're increasingly doing.

And then one of the big challenges for this is it feels like potentially, quite a big administrative burden, like the communication alone when you think about how requests will be managed, when you think about the number of different things within pay reward, HR, this touches. It feels like quite a big subject to get your head round.

And we have communication experts but also technology solutions like Embark that are going to make this from an administrative perspective much easier for employees employers, sorry, to manage.

EVA JESMIATKA: Yeah. Yeah. A lot of things to think about. But like you said, the good thing is that there are supporting services and technologies out there that could actually help with all of this.



TOM WOOLDRIDGE: And I guess the last thing I would say is that although this may feel like a challenge in terms of the level of communication and the level of education through for the most junior to the most senior person within the organization and all of your functions within HR, it is an important step and gives us accountability to delivering on a more fair and equitable society. So it's a very positive change and something that we can all get behind.

EVA JESMIATKA: Yeah. And I couldn't agree more with that. And I think altogether, what strikes me here is that there is a lot of work to be done for companies. And reflecting back on how we actually started our first conversation on this, when we mentioned, there's still a few more years before the EU pay transparency directive will become effective. Do companies actually need to start thinking about communicating already or planning for this? And I think the answer is yes, because there is a lot to be done. So make use of the time that you have available to get ready for this.

Thank you very much for sharing all your insights and experience today, very helpful for me. And I hope, of course, that our audience found it helpful as well.

So thank you as well for joining us. Continue to follow us because there is a lot happening when it comes to pay equity and transparency. And we'll continue to monitor this. And of course, continue to produce new content on this. So we hope to see you in any of our next video series.


Global Pay Equity Lead
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Europe Pay Equity Lead

Employee Experience Director – Change Management and Communication
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