“Employers realise now more than ever that recruiting and retaining good people – irrespective of gender – is absolutely critical for competitiveness. But this won’t be helped by tying business into more restrictive regulation. There is already a legal framework in place to regulate equal pay and it is doubtful whether simply adding to it through compulsory pay audits will help to narrow the gap.
“If we are serious about tackling disparities in pay between genders then more flexible workplaces are a priority, but this won’t be delivered by extending the right to request. In research conducted by the BCC in April we found a lack of management skills to be the biggest barrier to workplace flexibility. Rather than landing managers with more demands, flexibility would best be served through working with business to develop their skills.”