In what is likely to be one of the most important employment law developments of 2017, the Government has published the final version of regulations requiring employers with more than 250 employees to publish gender pay gap figures.

The regulations are expected to come into force early next year with the first gender pay gap reports requiring to be published in April 2018.

Key requirements of the regulations are:

  • employers will be required to publish mean and median pay information gleaned from the whole workforce;
  • they must also publish how many men and women appear in each quartile of pay in the workforce as well as the difference between the mean and median bonus payments paid to men and women and the proportion of men versus women receiving a bonus;
  • the pay gap information must be published on the employer's website every year, and left there for at least three years, as well as linked to a government sponsored website; and
  • the government proposes to “name and shame” employers who do not comply. No civil or criminal penalties are proposed for non-compliance but the Government will keep that under review.

The final regulations take into account some of the feedback received by the Government on the draft regulations including in relation to the definition of basic pay, the methodology for calculating the required figures and the approach to be taken to employees on paid leave.