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Day Three – Friday 16 September


C3 Social Values

Philippa Hall    

Implementing Pay and Employment Equity in NZ today

Philippa Hall, Department of Labour

Pay and employment inequity is back on the agenda. With a tight labour market employers have to attract and retain skilled and productive staff. Recent research highlights the gender pay gap in New Zealand and shows that women are experiencing inequity in their workplaces and a gender pay gap in their handbag. Public sector, public health and public education practitioners will be asked to implement a five year action plan for pay and employment equity and this workshop will help to you do this. Although the action plan is focussed on the public sector, private employers are more than welcome to attend and contribute their experiences.

Find out about the new pay and employment equity tools developed
by the P&EE Unit in the Department of Labour and tested by three pilot audits. Participants will work with the tools to identify and research equity issues within their organisations using case study material from the pilot audit process. The workshop will help participants gain an insight into the gender equity issues at their work place and tips for developing strategic and real responses that contribute HR best practice.

Most people will have heard the term "equal pay". They know it means two people doing the same job getting the same rate of pay for that job, regardless of their gender and they are right. The concept has been around since the 1970's with the passing of the Equal Pay Act in 1972; however it's not a reality for many women as most women do quite different jobs from men.

Pay and employment equity is a broader approach and brings it right back on the agenda. With a tight labour market employers are competing to attract and retain skilled and productive staff. A fair and equitable employer attracts a broad range of applications and pay and employment equity can help an employer solve staff shortages and improve the fit between productivity and reward.

Department of Labour research shows that in 2004 New Zealand women were earning 87.3% of men's pay on average. The three key factors contributing to the gender pay gap are:

  • The occupations of women in the workforce and the level at which they work in an organisation (known as horizontal and vertical inequity)
  • The valuing of jobs, or the undervaluing of female–intensive occupations; and
  • The relationship between the structure of paid work and women's job choices and progression, – especially in relation to family responsibilities.
  • Pay and employment equity is about addressing the gender inequity in women's pay and employment conditions. The workshop will assist HR staff to review the policies and practises in their organisations that give women access to employment opportunities and ensure that pay and conditions of employment are not based on gender assumptions.

The Pay and Employment Equity Unit has been set up within the Department of Labour to implement the government's five year action plan for pay and employment equity. The Unit's developed a pay and employment equity audit tool and a gender–neutral job evaluation tool. These help an organisation assess their equity performance and work out equitable outcomes for present and future employees. In this session participants get hands on experience working with pay and employment equity knowledge, processes and tools and come away with a practical approach to implementing gender equity.

This is an interactive research based session based on practical tools. Philippa's focus is on making pay and employment equity more than a line on a business plan or in a reporting mechanism.

Philippa Hall is Director of the Pay and Employment Equity Unit within the Department of Labour. Philippa has worked extensively on women's employment issues including industrial relations, pay equity, labour market, education and training, occupational health and safety and sex discrimination. Prior to taking up her role as Direct she was the Deputy Director General of the NSW Department for Women.

Philippa has worked extensively on human rights issues and takes a keen interest in international cooperation to advance the human rights of women. She participated in the Fourth World conference on Women in Beijing in 1995 and has participated as an invited guest and speaker forums on advancement of women in Korea, Japan, New Zealand and the USA. She has presented papers on these issues on many occasions and provided advice to the Australian State and Federal Governments on legislative and policy issues relating to women's employment and other issues for women.

C3 Session Indicator    more info


Social Values



Grunt Factor:





Presentation 30%; Q&A 20%; group work 30%; forum 10%; reporting 10%



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