AXA UK narrows its gender pay gap

7 February 2020

Posted in People

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  • The median pay gap is 0.2% narrower than last year and the bonus pay gap is 6.4% narrower
  • The key driver for the gaps remains gender distribution across junior and senior roles
  • Parity efforts continue via recruitment processes, and mentoring and leadership programmes

AXA UK’s gender pay gap report shows the insurer has reduced the difference between the wages and bonuses paid to men and women but needs to pursue its efforts towards parity.

Based on hourly rates on 5 April 2019, women at AXA UK1 earn 20% less than men in median terms, and 23% less in mean (average) terms.

The pay gap is narrower than last year by respectively 0.2% and 0.8%.

While some entities (AXA UK plc and AXA PPP Healthcare) improved over the last twelve months, others saw the gap widen slightly. In particular, a remuneration restructure in Health On Line increased pay for sales roles (and reduced bonuses). As these roles are predominantly male, this had an impact on the gender pay gap figures.

When it comes to bonuses, women receive 25% less than men in median terms, and 43% less in mean (average) terms.

The bonus gap2 is narrower than last year by respectively 6.4% and 3.5%.

For both pay and bonuses, the key driver for the gaps remains the proportions of each gender at various levels in the organisation: more women work in junior roles and more men in senior roles. There are also more men in some professional families which attract higher wages, for example IT and actuarial, although this has less of an impact on the figures than gender distribution.

“We are under no illusions that it will take time to close the gender pay gap. However, with AXA’s positive culture and driven mind set, I am confident we can tackle it. We’re focused on increasing the representation of women at senior levels, not just because it’s the right thing to do; it’s absolutely vital for the culture of the company and for our financial success. Research shows that companies with more women in leadership roles deliver better returns and are more successful.”

— Lucinda Charles-Jones, Group HR Director, AXA UK & Ireland

Concrete steps

Increasing the number of women in senior roles remains a priority and several initiatives support this goal:

  • The Women in Leadership Programme is now in its fourth cohort; more than 80 women have benefitted from it.
  • The recruitment process has been reviewed: candidates are no longer asked about past salaries; job adverts state the roles are open to flexible working; and a digital training module will soon be launched to support hiring managers.
  • The Management Committee (excluding the CEO) has a 50/50 gender split.
  • Internal communications campaigns showcase people and initiatives that make the AXA workplace truly inclusive; female role models featured prominently in the recent ‘We are AXA’ campaign.
  • AXA UK has partnered with the Insurance Supper Club, a business community for women operating in the sector.

“Having an inclusive workplace is at the core of our values and we are determined to share opportunities and rewards fairly. People are at the centre of everything we do. Only by empowering them will we achieve our ambitions.”

— Claudio Gienal, CEO, AXA UK & Ireland

AXA UK’s gender pay and bonus gaps

Pay gap 20% 22%
Bonus gap 25% 43%

Based on hourly rates of pay on 5 April 2019

2019 vs 2018 gaps

Pay gap -0.2% -0.8%
Bonus gap -6.4% -3.5%

The annual gender pay gap report helps AXA UK assess the progress achieved towards parity, but we also have initiatives in place to support our non-binary colleagues.

1 AXA UK refers to AXA UK Plc, AXA Services Ltd, AXA PPP Healthcare Group Ltd, AXA ICAS Ltd and Health-On-Line Company Ltd.

2 The bonus gap is based on bonuses paid in the 12 months prior to 5 April 2019.