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The University of Southampton
Human Resources

Equal Pay and Gender Pay Gap Reporting

The University is committed to providing equal pay for all our employees, as set out in our Equal Pay Policy. We publish Gender Pay Gap data on an annual basis and we conduct regular Equal Pay Reviews to ensure that we pay our staff fairly, equitably and without discrimination by gender, ethnicity, disability or any other protected characteristic.

The two methods of reporting are different:

Our Equal Pay Reviews are accompanied by recommendations and action plans designed to address both issues, as well as raising awareness of the internal and external drivers that underpin them.

You can find our published reports here:

Equal Pay Review 2019 Gender Pay Gap Data 2021
Equal Pay Review 2018 Gender Pay Gap Data 2020
Equal Pay Review 2017 Gender Pay Gap Data 2019
Equal Pay Review 2015 Gender Pay Gap Data 2018
Q&A - Gender Pay Gap Reporting Gender Pay Gap Data 2017

We are encouraged that our equal pay reviews demonstrate that the University provides equal pay for work of equal value, and that our mean gender pay gap has reduced every year since statutory gender pay gap reporting commenced in 2018. Our most recent gender pay return shows a mean gender pay gap of 13.7 per cent and a median gender pay gap of 19.9 per cent.

We are confident that this gender pay gap does not stem from paying men and women differently for work of equal value; the calculations instead reflect the significant gender differences in occupations across the University and the attrition of women at higher pay grades. The Office for National Statistics has published an article which provides more insight into the factors that affect men’s and women’s pay.

The chart below (Table A) shows the current balance of our workforce by gender and seniority. Women are well represented in senior Professional Services roles (labelled MSA7 in Table A), but less well represented amongst our professoriate (labelled ERE7 Bands A, B and C in Table A) and roles at Level 6. The reverse is true in many of our more junior roles at Levels 1-3.

Table A: Current balance of our workforce by gender and grade
Table A: Current balance of our workforce by gender and grade


The University has taken steps to address these trends. We have implemented changes to our career pathways, appraisal and promotions processes, with an understanding that all staff require proactive encouragement and support to make the most of the career development opportunities available to them. There have also been targeted initiatives aimed at supporting women to progress at a faster rate.

As a founding signatory of the Athena Swan Charter, and holder of a silver-level Athena SWAN award, we recognise the specific challenges that affect men and women in academic careers, which leads to fewer women at senior levels of higher education. We are committed to addressing these issues, to maximise the potential of all our staff.

We have made progress, and will continue to take action:

Bonus pay

For the purposes of gender pay gap reporting, bonus pay includes Clinical Excellence Awards, consultancy payments, Performance Related Pay (under a scheme that has now ceased), Staff Achievement Awards, Vice-Chancellors Awards, royalties and some relocation payments. Our most recent gender pay gap return shows a bonus pay gap in favour of men, and that a higher proportion of men than women received bonus pay. The majority of bonus pay was paid in the form of Clinical Excellence Awards, and approximately two-thirds of Clinical Excellence Award recipients are men, reflecting the gender profile of our clinical employees; this impacts our overall bonus pay gap. Overall, bonus pay accounted for slightly under 1% of our staff costs in the last year. Further details are included in our equal pay reviews.

Infographics: Examining the gender pay gap in Higher Education

These revised and refreshed infographics use information and data from the latest official earnings data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and HESA data and also draw on joint UCEA and HE trade union sector-level work.

The aim of the infographics is to explain Gender Pay Gap (GPG) issues in general and to present key information from the HE sector-level data.


Infographic 1
Infographic 1
Infographic 2
Infographic 2
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