New Workplace Trend: Pay Equity Initiatives

WorldatWork, a nonprofit organization for professionals who are engaged in total rewards, recently conducted a survey and found that pay-equity initiatives are becoming standard practice in the significant majority of companies. Scott Cawood, President and CEO of WorldatWork, said the survey confirms that “pay equity is one of the single fastest-growing topics the HR profession has seen in decades.” The areas of the initiatives include recruitment practices, individual pay decisions, hiring practices, remediation evaluations, and broad pay equity analysis.

This is in line with what the law in Colorado and a number of other states is now requiring. Employers wanting to make sure they are considering this should know:

  • The laws that are passing may interrupt your past practices regarding hiring, promoting, and increasing pay for employees.
  • There are alternatives to asking for an employee’s salary history to consider, as this question is increasingly illegal in more states.
  • If you adjust pay because a woman holding the same job as a man is currently paid less with insufficient rationale, do not adjust the male employee’s pay downward.

A pay equity analysis will provide a degree of legal protection if employers take it seriously, and states are promising that protection in the laws they pass. Employers Council offers this service to our members. Please call us with any pay equity questions that you may have, especially if pay equity is a conversation at your organization.