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Absence of Formal Assessments Perpetuates Gender Pay Gap

In an era marked by heightened scrutiny around pay gaps, Syndio, the world’s leading workplace equity analytics platform, unveiled new research highlighting a key factor driving gaps: the lack of structured potential assessments. According to Syndio’s 2024 Workplace Equity Trends Report, organizations effectively fostering diverse teams at all levels are more than twice as likely to incorporate potential ratings into their evaluations, a trend that sets them apart from less effective counterparts. 

Based on survey responses from over 375 HR professionals, the report highlights how the absence of formal “potential reviews” sustains gender pay disparities. Recent research indicates that, on average, women receive higher performance ratings but lower potential ratings. This disparity translates to a 13% lower likelihood for women to be promoted compared to men, which keeps them ensnared in lower-tier positions within organizations, perpetuating the gender pay gap. To counter the bias, it’s critical for employers to formalize their assessment processes.  

The Syndio report also emphasizes the importance of being proactive and preventative against inequities. Organizations that outpace the industry norm by conducting more workplace equity analyses and tracking a broader range of employee categories are 51% and 14% more likely to effectively build diverse teams, a hallmark of a strong business and company culture. Employing analytics to maintain fair starting pay and pay adjustments throughout merit cycles, rather than rectifying pay inequities retroactively, is an instrumental practice for these forward-thinking companies.  

“The traditional methods of annual performance reviews and vague potential assessments hold organizations back from harnessing the true talent of their people. It’s time to fix the ‘broken rung’ once and for all,” said Maria Colacurcio, chief executive officer at Syndio. “The good news is that we understand the problems and the path forward is clear. Achieving lasting workplace equity hinges on employer’s commitment to measuring performance fairly by formalizing rating processes, reducing manager bias, and emphasizing succession planning. Given the recent Supreme Court decision, it is even more important for companies to utilize agnostic solutions that are both progressive and lawful. It’s one of the many reasons we build OppEQ.”  

As part of Syndio’s workplace equity platform, companies can use OppEQ to instantly analyze hiring, promotions, performance scores, and retention rates by gender, race, and more to identify the root causes of opportunity and pay gaps—and create action plans for improvement.  

According to Syndio’s report, organizations that analyze more movements in the employee life cycle than average are 51% more likely to effectively build diverse teams at each level. Leveraging the right technology makes more frequent analyses across more categories realistic, rather than arduous. 

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