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Gender pay gap reporting

What is gender pay gap reporting?

This is the third year we have reported on our gender pay gap, so we’re now able to track progress year-on-year. Gender pay gap reporting is not the same as paying men and women equally for doing like-for-like work – our Pay and Grading review in early 2018 means we are confident that we do this – but looks at the distribution of men and women through all pay levels of the organisation, the hours they work, and the effect this has on average hourly rates of pay. Our reporting date is early April each year, using data live at that time in the April previous (in line with the legislative requirement). This report, therefore, uses our data as at April 2019.

Why is this important?

It’s important that we have a diverse workforce that brings a wide range of skills, experience and knowledge to our work. We want to encourage a balance of men and women in the workplace, and take into account new attitudes to work that many people have – for example: part-time vs full-time working, career plans, secondments or career breaks. When we recruit new employees we always look for the best candidate for the job – irrespective of gender – but we have to be careful that our process for defining job structure and hours of work does not favour either men or women.

What are we asked to look at?

For gender pay gap reporting we’re asked to look at: 

  • The difference (as a percentage) between the average pay men and women receive (the ‘mean gender pay gap’) 
  • The difference (as a percentage) between the median pay men and women receive (the mid-point of the individual pay rates in the organisation – the ‘median gender pay gap’) 
  • The balance of men and women across our employees overall, and in four equal-sized groups when ranked by pay (‘quartiles’)

Employers are asked to do separate calculations in terms of ‘ordinary’ pay (which includes allowances, some of which do not apply to everyone) and ‘bonus’ pay. Because we do not offer bonuses, we only report on ‘ordinary pay’. 

Key findings

Our mean gender pay gap is: 13.8%

The average hourly rate paid to women is 13.8% less than men. Last year, this figure was 14.4%, and the year before was 15.4%, meaning we have reduced the gap by 0.6% this year and 1.6% since 2017. 

Our median gender pay gap is: 14.3%

The median hourly rate paid to women is 14.3% less than men. Last year the gap was 12.9% so the median gender pay gap has increased by 1.4%. As noted below, the median gender pay gap for all employees in Scotland in 2019, as reported by the Scottish Government, was also 14.3%. 

The median is generally used to compare the gender pay gap because the distribution of earnings is uneven, with more people earning lower salaries than higher salaries. The mean is highly influenced by the salaries at the upper end of a pay scale and so may not be truly representative of the average earnings of a typical person. The median avoids this issue and so is considered a better indicator of typical ‘average’ earnings. The Scottish median gender pay gap for all employees (part-time and full-time) in 2019 was 14.3%, and for the UK as a whole 17.3%.

Why do we have a pay gap? 

The main reasons we have a gender pay gap are: 

  • We have disproportionately more women working than men. 
  • The women tend to be in roles in the lower quartiles of our pay brackets (69.8% of people earning at our entry rate pay point are women, compared to 30.2% men). 
  • There are proportionally more part-time jobs in our lower pay brackets, which are more likely to be filled by women (the gender balance for full-time roles is 52% male, 48% female, while for part-time it’s 27% male, 73% female). The balance for part-time roles has stayed broadly the same from 2018 to 2019, but the balance of women to men in the full-time roles has improved (in 2018 it was 53.4% male, 46.6% female). 

The gender balance in our more senior roles does not match our overall gender mix of 61% female, 39% male.

There is some movement across the quartiles from last year, with increases in the middle quartiles for females and the upper quartile for males.

Swipe to view table

Quartile2019 data2018 data2017 dataMovement
Lower Male 31% 
Female 69% 
Male 30.4% 
Female 69.6%
Male 31% 
Female 69%
0.6% increase in males
Lower-Middle Male 30.7% 
Female 69.3%
Male 32.9% 
Female 67.1%
Male 30% 
Female 70%
2.2% increase in females
Upper-Middle Male 41.8% 
Female 58.2%
Male 44.4% 
Female 55.6%
Male 40% 
Female 60%
2.6% increase in females
Upper Male 52.3% 
Female 47.7%
Male 50.8% 
Female 49.2%
Male 52% 
Female 48%
1.5% increase in males

What are we doing to encourage gender balance in the workplace?

  • Most of our lower-paid roles are property-based and part-time/part-year. Whilst rates of pay do not vary whether an employee is part-time/part-year, this type of working may have appealed in the past more to women than men.
  • Increasing numbers of our properties are open for longer ‘seasons’ with the potential consequence of attracting employees looking for year-round employment. In turn, this may see a more balanced workforce of women and men, with the consequence of addressing the lower quartile challenges. 
  • We introduced a new pay model in early 2018 which gives more clarity about how jobs are sized for pay, and more flexibility for managers to recruit against market conditions and progress pay on the delivery of objectives and corporate behaviours. To ensure that gender inequality does not become a factor for this new pay model, a robust governance structure has been introduced which includes monitoring of pay on entry and pay progression against gender, and  senior sign-off for non-standard rates or amounts. A revised job evaluation process was included in the development of the pay model, which ensures all jobs are evaluated objectively.
  • Our salary negotiation is carried out on a corporate basis with our trade union, rather than an individual basis. All our salary points are published on our intranet and are visible to all our employees, and are included in job adverts.
  • We use a structured interview process for all our vacancies, using a competency-based framework focused on our corporate values. We also anonymise our applications to guard against any unconscious bias from recruiting managers. 
  • We’ve introduced several training interventions to support recruiting line managers as they’re required to make recruitment decisions based on suitability for the job (against stated job criteria as opposed to gender or any other protected characteristic). These include mandatory online learning modules on Unconscious Bias and Equality & Diversity, and refreshed face-to-face recruitment training for managers who have not attended such a module within the six months prior to recruitment interviews. We’re also beginning a three-year programme on Equality, Diversity & Inclusion in our workforce, to reinforce our position in the employment marketplace as a fair and inclusive employer, and to ensure that any underlying cultural issues are brought into the open and discussed amongst our existing employees.
  • We’re exploring the best way to open and promote career paths and succession planning for our workforce, so that individuals who already work for us can see a route for their career development through roles at different levels in the same or different job families, and so that individuals new to us are attracted by the potential journeys we can take them on. This will broaden our appeal in the diverse marketplace where we know many people are seeking not a job for life but a career moving through different levels of responsibility and accountability in a way that suits their aspirations. For example, we’ve established a gardener apprenticeship scheme, and our operational re-focus on visitor service/experience (with clarified roles at various levels) will, for the first time in the Trust, identify a clear career path in this discipline. 
  • We continue to operate our family-friendly policies to support individuals who wish to blend family or caring responsibilities with work. Our Flexible Working policy makes sure that decisions about the granting of different ways of working (eg compressed hours, moving to part-time) are based on business needs and not on factors such as gender (or other protected characteristics). The uptake of Flexible Working will be monitored and specifically analysed against gender and pay to measure impact. 
  • Every employee is managed effectively and fairly through an annual review of performance and target setting, with regular one-to-one meetings throughout the year. The performance review has an element of self-assessment, but is focused on a joint, collaborative approach from the manager and employee. The performance appraisal process informs pay progression decisions later in the calendar year.

In summary

The Trust takes equality and diversity very seriously, and is always developing new ways to encourage people to be part of our workforce – whether as an employee or a volunteer. We want people to recognise us as a great place to work – irrespective of gender (or any other protected characteristic) – but we know that there are some issues we need to address, and that these may take some time. The Trust has embarked on a transformational journey to make sure that we can continue to be a leader in conservation and heritage, and ‘doing the right thing’ for our workforce is very high on our agenda. 

We have a regularly updated page for current volunteering and job opportunities or you can click on the Volunteering & Jobs link at the bottom of any of our webpages.


Download the full 2020 gender pay gap report for the Trust.