Only one top UK agency reveals ethnicity pay gap in BLM audit

BLM Adland Audit reveals that pay gap data has yet to be widely collated.

Black Lives Matter: Campaign survey
Black Lives Matter: Campaign survey

Just one of the UK's biggest advertising and media agencies has calculated its ethnicity pay gap, a survey by Campaign has revealed.

As part of its Black Lives Matter Adland Audit, a reporting initiative designed to uncover the steps agencies have taken since committing to “actions not words” on racial injustice back in June, Campaign asked agencies to state their ethnicity pay gaps.

This revealed that of more than 40 of the biggest ad and media agencies only Lucky Generals was in a position to publish its data. The agency’s mean gap data is 32.6%, while the equivalent median figure is 20.8%. 

Katie Lee, chief executive of Lucky Generals, said: “In making a concerted effort to improve our diversity and inclusion, we knew we had to look at the hard data, even if it was uncomfortable.

“We couldn't find industry benchmarks so didn't know how we were tracking but knowing we needed to improve meant that we had to make that leap into the unknown,” she added.

Pay gap data is viewed as a key way of measuring inequality between workers at the same company and allowing firms to benchmark against their peers. In 2017 it became mandatory for companies with more than 250 employees to publish their gender pay gap data.

This year, however, the government told companies there was no requirement to reveal the data as it was due at the height of the Covid-19 crisis.

The government had said it would consider making ethnicity pay gap reporting mandatory for large companies but has yet to respond to a consultation on the issue which closed in January 2019.

Click here to read more on Campaign's BLM Adland Audit.

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