Equal Pay for Work of Equal Value


The sphere of business should not involve any discrimination because people of all nationalities and genders should be treated with respect and obtain equal wages and benefits for their work. Such ideas are promoted under the concept known as “equal pay for equal work” (Equinet, 2013). In this framework, women and men are to be equally paid for similar work.

Still, today women tend to earn only 70-90% of men’s wages (Oelz, Olney, & Tomei, 2013). Thus, women’s human right to individual dignity can be injured, and this aspect also shows inequality. Furthermore, inequality is an economic issue because it affects the nation’s productive potential. Decreasing salaries also reduce productivity and increase human resources’ turnover. In response to this issue, it is critical to develop a plan for application and promotion of the “equal pay for equal work” concept.

Advantages of the Concept

Professionals encourage business owners to apply the concept of “equal pay for equal work” for several reasons. First, the concept ensures that the human rights to dignity and equality are not violated in the country. Today, people pay close attention to this issue, and the concept application can enhance the satisfaction of the general public. This concept allows for using skills effectively as some operations, for instance, tasks requiring accuracy and attention, are maintained by women better than by men (Oelz et al., 2013).

Thus, female workers are likely to become more loyal and hardworking as they see that their attempts are recognized. Additionally, human resource management can also benefit from this concept while attracting more talents. Furthermore, working relations among employees and with employers will improve because of the equal treatment of workers. Thus, organizations will attract employees, enhance their reputation, and receive more advantages when applying this concept.

Gender Pay Gap

Today, for equal work, women can get up to 30% smaller payments than men (Equinet, 2013). Even though wages should depend on employees’ education, industry, experience, working hours, and a company’s size, many workers are deprived of decent payments because of their sex. This issue is often caused by stereotypes and prejudice that some jobs are not appropriate for women (Oelz et al., 2013). Thus, women’s work can be undervalued and considered to be insignificant. From this point, jobs positions can be evaluated considering requirements for male employees only. In addition to that, women are claimed to be less efficient in bargaining. As a result, in many cases, women are paid less than their male colleagues, emphasizing a pay gap between genders.

Normative Basis

The concept of “equal pay for equal work” is supported by the principles of the United Nations Global Compact and International Labor Organization. These principles emphasize equal remuneration and absence of biases based on individuals’ gender. Attention is paid to various components of rewarding practices, including overtime, cash benefits, incentives, allowances, work materials, and vouchers (International Labor Organization, n.d.). Professionals are encouraged to compare similar jobs using various methodologies to determine their equal value. From this point, organizations should focus on special evaluation systems to ensure that no biases and stereotypes related to employees’ sex are observed in the workplace.

Application of the Concept

Applying the “equal pay for equal work” concept, employers can resolve issues associated with job evaluation. A special committee that includes at least 50% of females should be established. These women need to be provided with training in ethics and organizational culture to acquire the knowledge related to the problem of inequality in payment (Oelz et al., 2013). As soon as a plan of action is developed, the members should allocate resources for the concept application and define the way they will communicate.

First, a list of jobs for comparison should be developed to ensure that no gender bias is observed in them. Qualifications, efforts, responsibility, and working conditions are to be considered when evaluating a job. A questionnaire should be developed and shared among employees to state ideas regarding possible inequality, and findings should be analyzed separately, resulting in the development of a job profile (International Labor Organization, n.d.). Finally, information for calculating gaps in males’ and females’ wages can be gathered. On the basis of these data, pay adjustments can be maintained. Thus, payments for female workers are expected to increase and reach the level of payments for males.

Possible Challenges

During the implementation of the concept, several challenges can be experienced. Due to the changes observed in the workplace as a result of the concept application, it may be necessary to reconsider professional and family responsibilities, which may cause interrelation issues. Even though the existence of stereotypes is not openly admitted, they are often observed in organizations. The adoption of the “equal pay for equal work” concept can potentially address these stereotypes. Furthermore, the legislation prohibiting wage discrimination should be developed (Oelz et al., 2013).

Moreover, secrecy on wages can be a problem because the implementation of the equal pay concept presupposes that the amount of money earned by men and women is revealed. Finally, implementation costs can also be a challenge. For example, organizations will review their human resource management systems and prepare reports, and additional training will be required. However, the application of the concept of equal pay is still needed to avoid discrimination in the workplace.


The concept of “equal pay for equal work” should be adopted in many organizations because males and females are often paid unequally. The implementation of this change can address the problem of inequality and overcome stereotypes. Following particular steps in the plan of the concept adoption, organizations can minimize risks and avoid challenges, but still, they should be ready to cope with them.


Equinet. (2013). Equal pay for equal work and work of equal value: The experience of equality bodies.

International Labor Organization. (n.d.). Equal pay for work of equal value: How do we get there?

Oelz, M., Olney, S., & Tomei, M. (2013). Equal pay: An introductory guide. Geneva, Switzerland: International Labor Office.

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