Last year saw the arrival of gender pay gap reporting in Ireland. December 2022 was the deadline for employers with a headcount of 250+ employees to report their gender pay gap (GPG)

As per the Gender Pay Gap Information Act 2021, they were also required to submit a statement declaring why any gap exists and how they plan to address it. 

Needless to say, not all organisations got their information in on time.

While the canine cliché in the title is a slight exaggeration, many reasons for missing the deadline are almost as flimsy…

Worst excuses for missing the first GPG deadline

gender pay gap reporting ireland excuses (3)

“Our IT guy left – we couldn’t get the data”

There may have been a superstar IT person who recently left the business. But the loss of an individual should never mean a loss of access to data. Build smart continuity planning and ensure processes and passwords are well documented.  You shouldn’t need IT anyway. 

“The HR record didn’t match the payroll data”

This could be a sign of bigger issues. If HR and payroll software records are misaligned, what other problems might result? Treat GPG as a canary in the coal mine; take the opportunity to find and fix the causes of data discrepancies. 

“We got the data but it doesn’t make us look good”

Tempting as it might be to bury bad news, it’s not a long-term winner. The pay gap reporting requirement is only set to broaden, encompassing more employers and potentially other characteristics in future e.g. ethnicity. The best approach is to be transparent about your pay gap and what you plan to do about it.  

“We left it to HR” 

Payroll needs to play an important role in GPG reporting. After all, this is where the hard data on real employee pay sits. 

“We left it to payroll” 

Payroll can supply the accurate data. But who will explain the gap and what the organisation intends to do about it? These are organisational policy positions – they need to be led by HR with senior leadership input. 

“We’re not sure the data’s right”

Because GPG reporting is a legal requirement, data accuracy is vital. But having the right information will also help you make smart workforce decisions, find efficiency savings, set organisational policy, and ensure compliance. Start the next reporting cycle early to allow time for thorough data checking. 

“We had a cyber-attack – we’ve lost the data” 

You have bigger issues here.  Go back to basics – protect your people, data, and company reputation. Then, you’ll be ready to start getting the data together again. 


When is the next deadline for gender pay gap reporting in Ireland?

gender pay gap reporting ireland excuses (1)

The deadline for large organisations will roll back around again in December 2023.  

Then, in December 2024, the deadline will apply to all employers with 150+ employees. This gives those smaller organisations enough time to get the necessary data and processes in place now. 

What should we include in the gender pay gap report?

  • Mean and median hourly pay for all employees (%) 
  • Mean and median hourly pay for part-time and temporary employees (%) 
  • Mean and median bonus pay percentage of all employees (%) 
  • Proportion of male and female employees that received bonus pay (%) 
  • Proportion of male and female employees that received benefits-in-kind (%) 
  • Proportion of male and female employees in four equally divided quarters (i.e. expressed as each of the employer’s lower, lower middle, upper middle and upper quartile pay bands). 
  • Employer’s statement explaining your GPG reporting and the measures you will take to address any gap. 

Where should we publish the gender pay gap report?

The GPG regulations specify that the report must be: 

  • Published on the website 
  • Accessible to all employees and members of the public 

Or alternatively, in a physical form made available for viewing, at the company premises. 

There are plans to introduce a central online portal where reports can be uploaded, in 2023. 

What happens if we miss the gender pay gap reporting deadline?

While there are currently no financial penalties for non-compliance, failure to report on time can cause reputational damage. That applies both externally, in the public eye, but also with your employees (and prospective recruits). 

The Workplace Relations Commission has the power to intervene, if an employee takes it up with them. The Irish Human Rights and Equalities Commission can also apply to a court to compel an employer to comply. 

How can Zellis help with gender pay gap reporting?

The analytics and reporting tools in our award-winning HR and payroll software make all the GPG data you need easily accessible. So, you won’t need to reach for any excuse. 

Learn more about gender pay gap reporting in Ireland from these key resources.