32 \\\\\ CHARTERED INSURANCE INSTITUTE
t is two years since larger organisations have been
mandated to report on their gender pay gap statistics,
and progress is being made. For the Chartered
Insurance Institute (CII), reporting has uncovered
positive year-on-year trends.
Since the report we produced in 2018, we have managed to halve
our pay gap, in just one year alone, to a mean of 14.77 percent. For us,
this highlights the benefits of reporting, even though we do not meet
the mandatory criteria.
Gender pay gap reporting enables organisations to properly
assess their internal organisational pay parity without any risk of
subjectivity, and then take whatever actions may be necessary to
create a fairer environment for all colleagues.
It is important to approach the pay gap challenge proactively as the
national pay gap has, for 2019, shown only a 1 percent improvement
on that of 2018. According to the World Economic Forum, at this
rate, we shouldn’t expect to see global parity until 2220, more than
200 years from now.
While this is a shocking assessment, it does show that more needs
to be done. What we need is proactive and constructive initiatives. This
is why the CII has revealed its figures for the second consecutive year.
As a professional body, the CII recognises the importance of
leading by example, and has chosen to volunteer not only our gender
pay gap figures but also our ethnicity gap figures.
We chose to do this because we believe that it is important for
organisations to understand how their people are impacted by imbalance
so that they can put in place aspirational targets for measurable plans.
The increase in public awareness has been beneficial to the cause
because it has led to a broader understanding of how women’s financial
lives are impacted. Although it has been illegal in the UK to pay women
less money for the same work as men since 1970, the reality according
to the most recent figures from the Office of National Statistics, is that
women’s earning potential amounts roughly to just 59 percent of that
of their male counterparts over the course of their lives.
Gradual progress is being made to close
the gender pay gap, and a good place to
start is with a willingness to acknowledge
that the problem exists, as Sian Fisher,
chief executive officer of the Chartered
Insurance Institute, explains.
roughly to just 59
percent of that of their
over the course of
There are multiple contributing factors, from the likelihood
of women reducing their working hours later in their careers, to a
disproportionately small number of women reaching C-suite level
in their organisations. This, coupled with the fact that a woman’s
pension can be worth on average one-fifth that of the average man’s,
shows that the matter is quite complex.
The CII’s Insuring Women’s Futures campaign is a market
programme which was launched to conduct proper research on how
women’s risks in life differ from men’s, and what factors constitute
women’s financial wellbeing. In a previous report the programme
highlighted six significant moments at which good interventions
would significantly impact the financial wellbeing of women.
It is by the collective impact of all six moments that the financial
resilience of women could be materially improved.
The CII’s own experience shows there is no single solution to the
challenge of the gender pay gap, but a good place to start is with a
willingness to acknowledge that the problem exists and to put clear,
deliverable action plans in place to address it.
With clearly defined targets established by a consensus within the
profession for what positive change looks like, I have no doubt that
we can make real and positive headway towards a better, more fair and
secure future for all. ■
Sian Fisher is the chief executive officer of the Chartered
Diversity and Inclusion Report 2019 www.intelligentinsurer.com
SHUTTERSTOCK / BASTIAN WELTJEN