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Four fifths of PR firms don’t believe they have a gender pay gap, claims research

Four-fifths of communications agencies believe they do not have a gender pay gap according to a recent survey conducted by PRmoment with the help of research agency Question and Retain (Q&R), which shows there are still steps the industry needs to take to redress any remaining imbalance.

Gender pay gaps in the media have been in the news recently following the BBC releasing details of its salaries. The report revealed a gap between the pay of its male and female staff at the highest level with 25 men on the list receiving more than £250,000 compared with nine women. However, women social media stars are not suffering from the same discrepancy. Women influencers are commanding impressive incomes according to a recent report that shows female influencers earn 35% more than men for the same activities.

One problem leading to pay gaps in more traditional media and the communications sector as a whole, is the fact that companies do not have to disclose the amounts they pay staff. Peter Bowles, co-CEO at agency Dynamo Communications, believes transparency is vital: “The BBC has drawn attention to the pay disparities that occur every day in the business world. Its transparency also draws attention to the fact that many private organisations, that are less answerable to the government, simply do not disclose their pay gap at all. New legislation comes in place next year that very large PR firms must report their gender pay gap, but this only really affects the top five largest agencies. As a smaller but innovative agency, we decided to go public with our pay gap over two years ago. At the time this was great to demonstrate to staff members how much we care, but to also to push the industry forwards towards a more transparent situation.”

As well as individual agencies playing their part, the PR industry bodies are keen to fight any pay discrepancies. Bowles says: “The PRCA has some excellent guidelines and resources to help tackle this issue. The gender pay gap is a serious diversity issue, just as much as agencies need to look at bringing in more candidates from ethnic minorities and broader backgrounds. We hope more consultancies will join us by being transparent and ending this unfair gap.”

Read a PRmoment analysis of the CIPR figures into the PR gender pay gap here

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