Research highlights 74 percent gender pay gap among FTSE 100 directors

Jul 04, 2022
Men dominate higher-paid executive positions and earn more than women even at lower levels

Male corporate directors, who dominate higher-paid executive positions across the FTSE 100, earn 74 percent more than female directors serving the UK’s biggest companies.

That’s the finding from new research published by Mattison Public Relations, which shows the average compensation for male directors at those firms is now £935,000 ($1.14 mn) – dwarfing the £246,000 average paid to female peers.

Male directors also saw their salaries increase more over the last 12 months. Mattison says average pay for male directors in the FTSE 100 grew by 7 percent (£59,000) over the past year, while female FTSE 100 directors saw their average pay rise by only 4 percent (£9,000).

The ‘substantial boardroom gender pay gap in the UK is a result of men being chosen for the vast majority of higher-paid executive director roles,’ says Mattison.

When it comes to higher-paid executive positions, just 34 of the 238 executive positions on FTSE 100 boards are filled by women – 14 percent of the total. ‘The average FTSE 100 executive director is now paid £2.7 mn,’ notes Mattison’s research.

‘In contrast, women make up 393 of the 896 non-executive roles on FTSE 100 boards (43 percent). These roles are much lower paid, averaging only £137,000 per year. The majority of board roles filled by women are the much lower-paid non-executive roles.’

But the company also notes that even within the ranks of lower-paid non-executive roles, female directors are paid ‘markedly’ less than their male counterparts: women non-executives were paid £101,000 on average last year, while male non-executives were paid £166,000 on average.

Box-ticking doesn’t cut it

‘Businesses want to communicate their commitment to diversity but excluding women from executive board positions isn’t going to do that in 2022,’ says Maria Hughes, director at Mattison Public Relations, in a statement accompanying the findings.

‘The way a business communicates its diversity has become a very important issue for many stakeholders, from shareholders to customers. Having female senior executives is a much more powerful way to communicate that a business is taking diversity seriously.

‘Businesses must appoint women to their senior executive teams and enable women to progress through the ranks more quickly if they want to be perceived as taking this seriously as opposed to box-ticking.’

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