In March 2023 the Workplace Gender Equality Amendment (Closing the Gender Pay Gap) 2023 Act (‘WGEA’) was passed. These amendments are intended to reduce gender inequality in the workplace, and increase the mandatory reporting obligations for reporting organisations (being those with more than 100 employees) from the 2024 reporting period.
The changes require employers with more than 100 staff to:
• share their WGEA Executive Summary and Industry Benchmark Report with their Board (or governing body);
• from 1 April 2024, report to WGEA on additional data sets, specifically the age of employees, primary workplace location as well as the remuneration of the CEO, head of business and casual manager; and
• from 1 April 2024, report (as part of the annual WGEA reporting process) instances of sexual harassment and harassment on the grounds of sex or discrimination, as well as information about supports available to staff.
From 1 April 2024, larger employers with more than 500 employees must have a policy or strategy in place that target and address each of the six gender equality indicators.
From 2024, WGEA will also begin publishing the gender pay gap of employers with more than 100 employees. This will begin with private sector organisations from early 2024 and move to Commonwealth sector organisation’s from late 2024 into early 2025. Employers are not be required to change their reporting to facilitate this.
It is intended that these additional reporting obligations and reporting by WGEA will increase transparency, encourage action and discussion on the managing bodies of Boards to work towards reducing the gender pay gap.
Recommendations for Employers
Employers which fall under this Act, should ensure they are in a position to provide the new mandatory reporting information from April 2024.