Closing the superannuation gender gap

| March 21, 2016

The gender pay gap discussion has been on the table for years, and whilst there have been many positive steps toward closing this gap in the workplace, the Workplace Gender Equality Agency has still identified a particularly large pay and promotion gap, disadvantaging women and undermining their skills and expertise.

But gender discrimination is not unique to any one industry. In fact, the landmark 2014 report from the Human Rights commission found that 49 percent of Australian working women experienced some form of discrimination in the workplace during pregnancy and returning to work.

Proactive steps are needed to educate and empower businesses across all industries about the productivity, financial and societal benefits of diversity and inclusion. Achieving pay parity and inclusive workplaces must be on the agenda for every business.

At MYOB we are committed to diversity, and believe our business success is a reflection of the quality and skill of our people. We recognise that each employee brings their own unique capabilities, experiences and characteristics to their work, and that our people should reflect our client base and the communities we operate in.

This month, we announced that we will continue to contribute to employees’ superannuation savings throughout parental leave. In doing this, we are joining just a handful of companies across Australia who offer this benefit to their team members.

We encourage more businesses across the country to get on board and address the existing superannuation gender gap.

Why? Right now, the average super payout for women on retirement sits at $112,000 compared to the average payout of $198,000 for men. Women retire with 43 per cent less super savings than men, on average. One of the factors is the fact women tend to spend more time out of the workforce to care for family, and because super is a percentage of your salary, this means less super for women.

Women are also more likely to retire earlier and live longer than men. This means they are more likely to need more super for a comfortable retirement.   

We are working to bridge the gap and build stronger superannuation balances by adjusting our employees’ parental leave policy. Primary carers, with a minimum of 12 months’ service, will now receive full superannuation contribution payments for the length of their parental leave, up to 52 weeks.

We recognise our talented team as a key competitive advantage and we feel this simple change is a great way to show our people that we value them. By supporting our employees in both their personal and their professional lives we hope to not only retain our existing talent, but attract further talent to join our fantastic team. We encourage employers to think about ways they can work towards an equal future for all their employees.

But we’re also mindful that flexibility is not just for women. Balancing work and family is a men’s issue too. The way we work has changed so much in the last decade, and cloud-based tools mean that anyone, male or female, can do their jobs in a flexible way in order to meet the needs of their client.