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Peer2Peer Finance News | September 23, 2019

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Zopa reveals 38 per cent median gender pay gap

Zopa reveals 38 per cent median gender pay gap
Hannah Smith

ZOPA has published details of its gender pay gap for the first time, revealing numbers its chief executive describes as “far from ideal”.

The UK’s oldest P2P platform revealed combined numbers from across Zopa Limited and its new banking arm, Zopa Bank. It reported a median gender pay gap of 37.8 per cent and a mean gender pay gap of 25.9 per cent.

It also revealed a median gender bonus gap of 40 per cent, and a mean gender bonus gap of 36.5 per cent. Some 58.3 per cent of male employees received a bonus, compared to 49.6 per cent of female employees.

Women held 53.9 per cent of roles in the lowest pay quartile, and just 19.5 per cent of jobs in the upper quartile of pay. Looking across the pay scale, 68 per cent of its female staff sit in the bottom two pay quartiles compared to 40 per cent of male employees.

Zopa said this is because it employs fewer women in senior leadership and management roles, and a disproportionately higher number in non-technical, administrative and operational roles such as customer service. This is why the median pay gap is significantly higher than the mean pay gap, it added.

The low proportion of female STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) graduates means the talent pool for the higher paying technical jobs is predominantly made up of men, Zopa said, pointing out that only a quarter of STEM graduates last year were women.

Read more: Recent board appointments highlight gender inequality in P2P

“Our numbers are far from ideal and it is evident that we have a long way to go in order to improve the gender pay gap at Zopa,” said Zopa chief executive Jaidev Janardana (pictured).

“We also recognise that change will not happen overnight and it will take time for results to show. It has been reported that due to the broad socio-economic factors influencing the pay gap – it will take over 100 years to address it in the UK. However, we have already started to take action to improve our gap in the short term with a view to ultimately closing the gap in the long term.”

Read more: Zopa to increase senior female headcount by five per cent 

The firm is taking a few steps to improve its gender pay gap:

  • It has signed up to the Women in Finance Charter and has committed to increase the percentage of women in senior management to 43 per cent by 2021.
  • It is also trying to improve diversity in recruitment and on its board.
  • It will remove biases in its job ads such as masculine language which could deter female applicants.
  • It will continue to offer flexible working.
  • And reduce reliance on traditional education and career paths.

Read more: Editor’s letter: The fintech sector needs to recognise women on their own merits