Gender and Ethnicity Pay Gap Reports 2020

Photo of a researcher inspecting slides with cell information

Today we’re publishing Cancer Research UK’s gender and ethnicity pay gap reports.

There is a UK government requirement for all companies with over 250 employees to publish their gender pay gap data. We’ve also published our ethnicity pay gap report, which isn’t a legal requirement, but we welcome the opportunity to be transparent and demonstrate our commitment to doing better. The 2020 gender and ethnicity pay figures published are calculated on pay on our snapshot date, 5 April 2020.

The Gender Pay Gap and Ethnicity Pay Gap is not the same as Equal Pay, which formed part of the 2010 Equality Act prohibiting discrimination of grounds of race and gender and other protected characteristics, and involves men and women or white and ethnic minority employees being paid the same for like/similar work.

The Gender Pay Gap is the difference in average pay between all men and women regardless of the work they perform. The Ethnicity Pay Gap is calculated by comparing the average pay of white employees and ethnic minority employees in an organisation, regardless of the roles they do.

Over the year, I’m pleased to report that we’ve reduced our mean (average) gender pay gap from 15.8% in 2019 to 15.0% in 2020. Since we started reporting our gender pay gap in April 2017, our mean gender pay gap has reduced from 18.7% to 15% this year, which is a 3.7% reduction overall. We reached our target of a minimum 50% of women in our two most senior roles (director and executive director) in 2019. In 2020 we’ve increased the proportion of women at director level to 57%, up from 52% in 2019. I’m particularly pleased to see us take further steps towards gender parity in technology and to see how ahead we are of the national average in this area.

However, we clearly aren’t where we want to be, and we recognise we still have work to do. Our median (middle) gender pay gap has increased from 23.3% in 2019 to 29.2% in 2020 which is influenced by the distribution of men and women across the charity in different roles.

Our mean ethnicity pay gap is currently -9.5%, meaning ethnic minorities are paid on average 9.5% more than white employees. The median ethnicity pay gap saw an increase from -22.3% in 2019 to -26.4% (-4.1) in 2020. Whilst this may seem like positive news on the surface, we have a relatively small percentage of ethnic minority staff, and particularly at senior levels, so these numbers don’t tell the full story.

We still have more to do to improve diversity at Cancer Research UK, and particularly with regards to the representation and experience of ethnic minority staff. Our recently published Equality, Diversity and Inclusion strategy will be an important milestone for us as an organisation including commitments to increase diversity across our people, and our leaders, with clear targets on how we are aiming to improve both our gender and ethnicity pay gaps. These commitments reflect our responsibilities as a large employer, and they will benefit our mission too.

It is well proven that more diverse organisations perform better. A more diverse and inclusive workforce will make sure we draw on a breadth of skills and perspectives, that we represent the communities we serve, and that we can make the best decisions possible. We’re particularly focused

on improving diversity across our governance, advisory and leadership structures and we have specific targets for these areas, as this is where we feel we can have the greatest impact.

A critical part of our approach to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion is accountability. We must be open about where we are now and how much more progress we must make, about where we have succeeded and where we have failed. Publishing our ethnicity pay gap report – for the first time this year – is part of that approach. I hope that by being open about where are today, we will set ourselves up for taking greater steps forward in the future and reduce our gender and ethnicity pay gaps further across Cancer Research UK.

We’re committed to changing, and I intend that this plan will keep us accountable for our progress and maintain our momentum as we move into an important new era for the charity, so that together we will beat cancer.

Michelle Mitchell OBE
Chief Executive Cancer Research UK