In the UK, public, private and voluntary sector organisations with 250 or more employees have to report on their gender pay gaps annually (2023 will be the 7th cycle of reporting). The report shows the difference between the average earnings of men and women expressed relative to men’s earnings.

A gender pay gap doesn’t mean women are paid less than men for doing the same job within the organisation, but it does show that on average, men occupy higher-paying roles than women.

Where we are and why

At the snapshot date of 5 April 2023, WWT’s workforce consisted of 526 employees and casual workers with 36.9% being male and 63.1% being female.

Figure 1. Gender split of WWT employees

Our gender pay gap report reveals a 9.86% pay gap exists between the average pay of men and women and a 5.23% pay gap exists when looking at the median (mid-point) level of pay for our male and female workers.

Our average (mean) gender pay gap is showing a steady reduction over recent years, and in 2023 we saw a significant reduction in the Median pay gap.

2020 2021 2022 2023
Mean gender pay gap
(the average hourly rate)
14.86% 12.77% 11.44% 9.86%
Median Gender Pay Gap
(the mid point hourly rate when listed in order)
11.67% 11.93% 13.69% 5.23%

For gender pay gap reporting, we’re also asked to split our paid workers into four groups (quartiles) by hourly rate and to show the balance of men and women in each quartile (at the snapshot date).

Figure 2. Balance of men and women in each quartile

Our analysis revealed that the root cause of our gender pay figures is that more women than men are employed in part-time roles and within our casual worker positions at WWT. These part-time roles tend to exist at our lower grades and these have attracted a higher proportion of women at WWT, and more generally in society. We’re glad to be able to offer flexible working patterns that enable people to fit work around other commitments where possible. This year we have more women than men in the upper quartile but we will continue looking at what we can do to make the gender split more balanced across the four quartiles.


In addition, organisations must report on bonus pay. We don’t pay bonuses, however, this year we have a calculated figure for the bonus pay gap as we provided everyone eligible (both employees and casuals) within the organisation a one off discretionary payment in December 2022, to support our colleagues with the cost of living.

The bonus pay gap is calculated using bonus amounts paid to all relevant employees within the 12 month period ending on the snapshot date of 5th April 2023. This consisted of 527 employees and casual workers with 37% of men and 63% of women receiving the bonus payment. Our gender bonus pay gap reveals that a 6.04% pay gap exists between the average (mean) bonus paid to men and women and a 33.33% pay gap exists when looking at the median (mid-point) bonus amount for our male and female workers.

Our analysis revealed that the root cause of our bonus gender pay gap is that we have more casual workers who are women and more women that work part time (107 females compared to 27 males). The one-off payment provided to everyone eligible was based on one amount which was prorated based on the number of hours worked. As 63% of our casual workers were female during the relevant period and we have a higher proportion of part time female employees in the lower quartiles, this has led to a pay gap for the one off discretionary payment.

Paying the same for doing the same job

It’s important to note that the gender pay gap is not a measure of the difference in pay between men and women for doing the same job. Within WWT, men and women are paid equally at the same grade for doing equivalent jobs across the Trust and where differences occur through the payment of market forces, they are justifiable.

What we’re doing to improve our gender pay gap

Actions taken in 2023/2024

  • Continued to promote flexible and hybrid working which give more flexible options to enable colleagues at all levels within WWT to work in a way that suits their personal needs.
  • Continued to appoint a number of women, as the best candidates, to more senior roles within WWT.
  • Introduced in person exit interviews at more senior grades to try and identify any trends that may be impacting retention or any barriers to career progression.
  • Appointed a Recruitment Business partner to review the fairness and consistency of our recruitment process and resourced a new recruitment system to support this.
  • Appointed an Early Career Development Officer to research and propose possible Early Careers pathways at WWT.

Actions we plan to take in 2024/25

  • Tailor recruitment campaigns in areas where the pay gap is highest and ensure that flexible, hybrid, part time working and job share is offered when the role allows.
  • Develop and launch a Secondment policy and updated Recruitment policy so everyone is aware of internal routes to progress within their careers at WWT.
  • Launch recruitment of new casual workers through our new recruitment system from July 2024 to ensure consistency in approach for all people recruitment at WWT.
  • Launch our new recruitment processes to make sure they are as inclusive and transparent as possible and delivering training to hiring managers to support this.
  • Develop a framework for our Early Career pathways at WWT to enable people to gain entry to employment at WWT through placements and apprenticeships.

Committed to promoting equity

The reasons for more women wishing to work in part-time roles are influenced by cultural, economic, and societal factors. WWT cannot impact all of these factors but is committed to reducing its gender pay gap and this has been demonstrated in our 2023 figures. We are working hard to ensure that procedures and practices do not create barriers to gender equality and that we remove any obstacles to women reaching the senior levels of our organisation. We are serious about enabling a work life balance for all and are working to make our flexible working practices the best they can be. We have continued to promote flexible working and hybrid working and starting more detailed work on diversity, inclusion and belonging. We will also continue to recognise and challenge any factors that we believe contribute to the gender pay gap.

Kirsty Iles

Head of People

March 2024