The 5th of April is now firmly etched into the calendars of law firms across the UK. The day marks the deadline in which UK firms must report specific figures about their gender pay gap. The dust has now settled on the second round of reporting and firms can take a sigh of relief – for another year at least. Although limited solely to the UK, the figures provide a glimpse of how some of the biggest global firms are positioned in terms of their ongoing approach to gender diversity.
Of course, the obligation is not just limited to law firms but encapsulates any UK business of 250 employees or more. Last year, was the first time in which organisations were required to disclose their pay gap and although a level of imbalance was expected, the sheer magnitude in the gap took most by surprise. The legal sector was not immune. The industry also attracted added criticism over its lack of transparency with the majority of firms opting against including partners in their reporting. However, this year marked a change with 45 of the UK Top 50 providing this figure and in doing so, offering rare insight into the wide disparity in pay amongst the UK’s most senior and well-paid lawyers.
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