Pay Discrimination – Unequal Pay For Work of Equal Value


John and Mary work for the same company, put in equal number of hours every day, have the same skill set and equal experience. But on the salary day, John takes home a heavier paycheck than Mary, Why? Why this disparity in income when the job responsibilities remain the same? This is not just the story of Mary, but of thousand others who are victims of salary discrimination.

Gender and age are the two biggest factors that form the basis of income discrimination i.e. unequal pay for Equal job. If you too think your male counterparts are getting paid more than you, we have some useful tips to offer you.

What can you do?

Research about your market value and find out how much is the average salary for people with your skill-set and experience. You can visit forums, consult career counselors, look at various job openings similar to your job. This will help you know the competitive market rate for your job and help you get a clearer sense of what you are getting paid and how much you can expect.
Try finding out how much your company is paying other employees with the same job responsibilities as yours, especially your male counterparts. You can consult your HR manager or employee association head to find out the average salary range for specific positions.
Make sure your superiors/managers know about your work, the efforts you put in, your accomplishments and skills. It is important to market yourself well and make your efforts known when you are working for a big company.
When describing your work, use strong words such as ‘manage’, ‘lead’ etc. This creates a sense of confidence in you and also makes your superiors think highly about the way you conduct your duties.
During review meetings, talk about your contributions – how you helped save money for the company or how your strategies were responsible for the successful completion of projects or how you dealt with a particular problem and so on.

If doing all the above does not help in getting you a salary equal to that of others, you need to take some drastic steps such as:
Get in touch with other women employees in your company, chances are they too will be going through the same struggle as you. Get together, form a support group and approach the higher management in your company. Put your point across, properly document the data on pay discrimination and ask for equal pay.
Some companies have an employee association or union that is specifically meant to deal with such issues. Approach such a union and place your complaint asking for equal pay for equal job.
There are laws that support employee rights, you can contact the Equal Opportunities Commission for such problems and they can take legal action against your employer.

Your salary should be based only on your skills, experience and performance. If you feel your company is being unjust and paying you less than other employees, fight for your rights and follow the above mentioned guidelines.

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