WPP publishes UK gender pay gap report for 2019 and 2020

11 Mar 2021

WPP today publishes its UK gender pay gap report for 2019 and 2020.

Following the UK Government’s decision in May 2020 to suspend 2019 gender pay gap reporting due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, WPP is reporting its 2019 and 2020 numbers in the same publication.

In addition to statutory reporting, WPP publishes the consolidated data for all its companies in the UK. The consolidated mean pay gap decreased from 26.7% in 2019 to 24.6% in 2020, while the median pay gap decreased from 17.6% to 17.5%. More than 80% of WPP’s companies improved their gender pay gaps.

To allow a like-for-like comparison between 2019 and 2020 figures, the consolidated gender pay gap statistics have been adjusted to reflect structural changes to the business in the last two years, including a number of divestments.

Women now comprise 51% of WPP senior managers globally and the proportion of women on the WPP Board has increased to 43% (up from 27% since 2018’s gender pay gap data was published). Due to a greater focus on our female talent pipeline we have seen a 10% increase in women joining in the early career stage in the last three years. Nonetheless, the lower proportion of women in higher-paid UK senior executive roles results in an overall gender pay gap. This reflects the wider industry, with the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising reporting that only 34% of C-suite roles in the UK are held by women1.

To address the imbalance, WPP and its agencies are introducing new global, long-term strategic goals to increase inclusion and diversity of all kinds within the company, with a key aim to achieve greater gender balance at the top. To increase accountability and accelerate the pace of change, with effect from 2021 progress against these goals will be included in business performance reviews and within the incentive schemes of senior leadership across WPP.

WPP’s recently formed global Inclusion Council will work with CEO Mark Read and the Executive Committee to ensure the measures we are taking create systemic change across WPP and allow us to close the gap over time.

The report also details WPP’s investment in a range of sponsorship, apprenticeship and leadership programmes designed to encourage and accelerate the development of female talent.

WPP has been named for the last three years in the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index which recognises companies committed to transparency in gender reporting and advancing gender equality. It is also ranked 10th in the Hampton-Alexander FTSE 100 Ranking for Women Leaders and third in Equileap’s Global Report on Gender Equality.

  1. Institute of Practitioners in Advertising’s 2019 IPA Agency Census (April 2020)

Further information
Niken Wresniwiro, WPP
+44 (0)20 7282 4600
niken.wresniwiro@wpp.com

About WPP
WPP is a creative transformation company. We use the power of creativity to build better futures for our people, clients and communities. For more information, visit www.wpp.com.

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