GEPG 2022-2023

Current state

There have been key contributing factors to the decline in pay gaps, specifically in core roles. Factors such as increasing the pay of lower paid employees through role reviews, living wage adjustments and pay and progression approaches. At MSD there are still some areas where minor but relevant pay gaps between genders or ethnicities undertaking work of comparable value (like-for-like) have been identified. These are in the senior levels, but they are not the main contributing factors to MSD’s pay gaps. These like-for-like pay gaps are being addressed by targeted efforts similar to those that closed the initial core pay gaps outlined above. It is forecasted these will shift through the manager and senior specialist pay and progression framework review targeting this specific area. The current data shows MSD’s pay gap has been declining since 2018 and has begun to plateau over the last 12 months. This is because the pay gap is due to occupational segregation (see Figure 2).

Occupational segregation is the phenomena where certain demographics tend to work and cluster in different professions. We tend to see more women in core roles (often based in the regions and Service Delivery). Whereas more male employees tend to be in the higher paid Manager and Senior Specialist roles (often based in Wellington in National Office). At this point there is not enough data on gender diverse people at MSD to make a statistically significant comment on their positions. There is a similar trend amongst our ethnic groups, showing the majority of Māori, Pacific, Asian, MELAA and ethnic communities tend to work in core roles whereas New Zealand European peoples are often in the higher paid positions.

MSD is addressing these occupational segregated pay gaps by ensuring all employees have equal and equitable access to opportunities to progress their careers. The 2022/23 gender and ethnic pay gap action plan below outlines the planned actions that will aim to address the occupational segregation at MSD and look at the emerging leaders within MSD to ensure that people from all backgrounds have the opportunities, tools, and pathways to move into these Manager and Senior Specialist roles. This in turn ensures the leadership development and representation at MSD is fair and a realistic representation of the people at MSD as well as those that it serves. This approach is accompanied by an in-depth focus on recruitment strategies and remuneration guidance to ensure equitable practices are followed in all areas of internal and external recruitment and ensuring that salaries are fairly set.

Understanding that the current public service context is one of pay restraint and that this may change in the next 12 months, the focus of this action plan is to address areas of organisational growth and maturity in diversity and inclusion, uplifting capabilities, and inclusive leadership. Rather than to explicitly ensure there are going to be major shifts in the statistical pay gap data, the action plan works toward addressing the holistic factors that will set MSD up for a decline in its occupational segregation by creating equitable and equal opportunities for all. This is further outlined in the actions themselves but at a high level the plan will target geographic factors and barriers for carers, disabled people, people from diverse ethnic backgrounds, women and the SOGESIC (sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics) diverse communities. These specific areas will be addressed through the six pou outlined by Papa Pounamu below and the key MSD focus areas – recruitment, remuneration and leadership development and representation (see Figure 8).

Figure 2. MSD’s Gender Pay Gap trends 2017/22
Figure 2. MSD’s Gender Pay Gap trends 2017/22

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