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Equality and diversity

Addressing the
Gender Pay Gap

Information about the gender pay gap at York St John University as at 31 March 2023.

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The following information aligns with the requirements of the Equality Act 2010 (Section 147) as they relate to York St John University by identifying any gender gaps in pay and bonuses. 

Gender Pay Gap data for 2023

At York St John University we are firmly committed to equality of employment and opportunity. Our grading system measures all roles against the same criteria to ensure fairness and consistency so that that women and men are paid equally for the same work.

Our data does not show any equal pay for equal value issues, but it does identify gender segregation, which is a tendency for women or men to be over-represented in certain occupations. Women are still over-represented in lower grades such as grade 3 professional support roles and under-represented in senior roles. 

It is this distribution of gender across different grades that is the primary contributing factor towards our mean pay gap of 11.4% and median pay gap of 15.1%.

Academic staff pay gap

Our data for academic staff show that the overall pay gap across all academic colleagues is 2.2%. This compares favourably with the sector average, where the gender pay gap for academic staff is mean 10.2% (HESA data 2021-22). Across higher education, gender pay gaps remain highest among academic staff, though still evident among professional and support staff. At York St John, we see a different picture with a very marginal gender pay gap amongst our academic workforce and a slightly higher percentage of women than men in academic roles.

Why do we have a Gender Pay Gap?

At the snapshot date of 31 March 2023, the workforce at the University comprised 58% female and 42% male employees. We had 1026 employees and a casual workforce of 254 (of which 69% are female).

We have more women employed at grade 9 and an equal number of men and women at grade 8. However, we have slightly more male professors and a much higher number of women employed in lower grades, where part time work is more common and at the lower end of the pay structure. This, plus the other factors detailed below, account for the differences identified in our gender pay gap data.

In-house teams

We are proud to have in-house cleaning and catering teams at York St John, which offer colleagues improved terms and conditions. These teams employ a higher number of women in these lower paid roles.

Student Ambassadors

We offer paid employment to our students who work as student ambassadors. Most of our student ambassadors are female which disproportionately increases the number of women on a lower rate of pay (although the University is a Real Living Wage Employer and pays above the national minimum wage for these student roles).

Salary sacrifice

We have a higher number of female colleagues accessing salary sacrifice schemes such as Childcare vouchers, which further reduces the average hourly rate of our female staff.

Senior women on leave

When the Gender Pay Gap data is calculated, some staff are not included in the calculations because they received less than their normal pay. In the 2023 data, several senior female colleagues were excluded due to either maternity, sickness, or parental leave. The impact was even greater this year due to UCU strike pay deductions being made from senior women in the relevant pay period.

What are we doing to eliminate our Gender Pay Gap?

As part of our commitment to tackling gender inequality, the University adopted the Athena Swan Charter on International Women’s Day 2022. We hold an Athena Swan bronze award for this framework to support and transform gender equality within higher education (HE) and research. We are currently implementing an action plan to embed gender equality actions into our policies, practices, and culture.  This includes overt actions such as supporting women leadership programmes, as well as addressing hidden inequalities.

York St John University became an accredited Real Living Wage Employer in April 2022. We have now increased the average hourly rate of all colleagues on lower grades to £12 per hour. This includes our Student Ambassadors, who are all paid above the national minimum wage. Since the 2023 reporting period, we have increased our average hourly rate for female staff from £18.95 to £19.76 per hour.

  • We have updated our promotions criteria to provide a positive career pipeline for female professorships at the University and have recently appointed 6 female professors.
  • We run targeted recruitment campaigns to attract more male applicants to catering, cleaning and administration and roles. We have reviewed how we recruit to these lower grade roles by reviewing job titles and using tools to eliminate gendered language bias.
  • We recently undertook a review of some administration roles which resulted in a re-design of some posts, primarily held by female colleagues, which will positively impact next year’s data.
  • We continue to promote part-time and flexible working for senior roles and ensure measures are in place to support this.
  • We continue to work with our women’s staff network to address barriers to part-time working and career progression.
  • We continue to look at ways to develop career pathways across Professional and Student Services to support career development as part of our People and Culture action plan.
  • Our median bonus pay gap is in favour of women and 97% of bonuses at York St John University relate to long service.

As one of very few universities with a female Chancellor, Vice Chancellor and Chair of Governors, we are in a strong position to advocate for authentic and meaningful change at all levels. Our ongoing work to address the gender pay gap is a fundamental part of our wider commitment to equality and inclusion.

Facts and figures

Gender distribution by grade

The number of male and female full-pay employees in each pay grade. 

Gender split by grade (salaried headcount) March 2023
  Female Male Total
Apprentice rate   1 1
Grade 1 46 19 65
Grade 2 14 20 34
Grade 3 68 30 98
Grade 4 63 44 107
Grade 5 75 58 132
Grade 6 86 43 129
Grade 7 92 62 154
Grade 8 101 104 205
Grade 9 32 27 59
Grade 10 7 14 21
Leadership 10 11 21
TOTAL 593 433 1026

Table shows the number of salaried female and male staff in each grade and the total in each grade. It indicates that overall, we employ more women than men yet women are not as well represented as men at senior leadership levels.