Gender equality within companies

In recent years, many efforts have been made to strengthen equality and professional diversity between men and women, with the aim of reducing the disparities in situations. If to the views different laws we are getting closer to parity, we are in fact still a long way from it. Indeed, legislation within companies is slow to be implemented and materialized.

When the largest companies linger and struggle to adapt, the very small and medium-sized enterprises, pioneers in social innovation, play the main role.

Are you a business and want to commit to reducing inequalities?

Here is the article you need to start moving towards perfect parity now.

Gender equality, where are we?


Today, the average monthly wage gap in the full-time private sector is -18.6% for women. Indeed, when the latter have an average salary of € 1,943, their male colleagues, with an equivalent position and workload, receive an average salary of € 2,339.

Over a 43-year career, the cumulative difference amounts to no less than € 204,336.

Yet it has been shown on numerous occasions that equality between men and women is a guarantee of economic performance for companies. Everyone should therefore be a winner.

The diversity in the choice of his profession.

Half of the female population is concentrated on only 12 of 87 existing occupation families.

For example, 98% of home helpers are women and the same goes for housekeepers, assistants, secretaries. Concerning nursing assistants, the percentage of women is around 90%.

Women are also over-represented in low-paying jobs.

Prospects for professional development.

Contradictably, women study longer and are more educated than men. In the master’s year there are less than 60% of women against 40% of men.

However, they are much less likely to reach management positions, where they are only 17%. For management positions there are 42%.

Regarding women at the head of companies, they are more and more numerous in recent years but the gap is still present:

15% female managers for companies with less than 250 employees and 9% for large companies.

Reconciliation of private and professional life.

Reconciling family and professional life is a problem that concerns both men and women. Everyone wants to flourish in one as in the other and find their balance. On paper it is so. In reality, it is different.

When a child arrives, 1 in 2 mothers reduce or interrupt their professional activity for at least 1 month compared to 1 in 9 fathers . The question of the conditions of maternity and paternity leave could arise here. Many employees complain that they do not have enough time to devote to their family when a child is born. This extra time granted to the father would also benefit women who have just given birth.

In addition, half of women believe that the arrival of a child has had a negative impact on their professional life.

So to speak, there is still today for working women a choice to make between their private life and their professional life.

To conclude on this subject, it is important to remember that 82% of part-time jobs are held by women. This high percentage is explained in particular by the fact that they alone take on 75% of domestic work time. Or a second day of work after completing the first.

Parity in business according to the law.

The main principles of equality that companies of all sizes are required to respect:

  • Principle of non-discrimination : which refers to the differences in treatment linked to sex which are considered a crime and punishable by law.
  • Equal pay : the same work or work of equal value must be remunerated at the same level, regardless of the gender of the person who performs it.
  • Formulation of professional equality objectives : the terms of these formulations of objectives vary according to the size of the company in question.

Specific obligations for VSEs and SMEs.

Companies with less than 50 employees.

  • Formulate objectives aimed at professional equality.
  • Take concrete steps to achieve them.

For companies with 50 to 299 employees.

4 steps are necessary and recommended in order to achieve real equality within the company:

  1. Establish a diagnosis.

Detailed analysis and diagnosis of the situation of men and women in the company for each of the professional categories in the following areas:

  • Hiring
  • Training
  • Professional promotion
  • The qualification
  • The classification
  • Work conditions
  • Occupational health and safety
  • Effective remuneration and the link between professional activity and personal and family life.
  1. Implementation of an action strategy.

From the diagnosis established, define a strategy comprising:

  • A review of the actions of the previous year
  • Progress objectives for the coming year
  • Results indicators to monitor and measure the achievement of these objectives.
  • Actions are put in place to achieve them as well as a schedule and a budget.
  1. Negotiate a deal.

Once these two steps have been taken, it is necessary to engage in collective bargaining with the union representatives in order to find an agreement relating to professional equality or at least a unilateral action plan.

The agreement or action plan must cover at least 3 of the 9 sectors mentioned in the 1 time step. Equal pay must be a part of it.

Any company that does not comply with this legal obligation is subject to a financial penalty of up to 1% of its payroll.

  1. Monitor and promote actions.

The companies must then follow the implementation and the effective realization of the actions undertaken in the agreement as well as to carry out the synthesis of this action plan. This summary includes progress objectives and actions taken followed by quantified indicators in order to measure their impact.

Finally, their task will be to promote these actions by making the synthesis visible within the company and to communicate about it to anyone who requests it. This summary must also be published and visible on the company’s website.

Calculation of the professional equality index.

All companies with at least 50 employees are required to calculate and publish their gender equality index each year on their website before March 1.

They must also communicate it to their Social and Economic Committee (CSE) as much as the labor inspectorate.

This index is calculated from 4 to 5 indicators, out of 100 points:

  • The gender pay gap
  • The number of employees increased upon their return from maternity leave
  • The difference in the distribution of promotions (for companies with more than 250 employees)
  • Parity among the 10 highest salaries.
  • The difference in the distribution of individual increases

The minimum required for is 75 points. If the company’s index is less than 75, it will have to put in place corrective measures to reach them within 3 years. These measures must be defined in the context of compulsory negotiation cited above.

In the event of non-publication of the index or of non-implementation of corrective measures or of inefficiency thereof, a financial penalty of up to 1% of the annual payroll of the company will be applied.

Do you want to carry out your parity diagnosis, calculate your index or implement the actions allowing you to reach it? Boost’RH offers you these services and puts at your disposal its human resources experts who support you throughout your process.