The data were published in a report, published through the government’s gender pay gap service, which used 5 April 2021 as a “snapshot date”. It also found that women’s mean hourly pay is 32.1% lower than men’s at the pharmacy multiple.
This represents a 6.2 percentage point increase on 2020/2021, when women’s mean hourly pay was 25.9% lower than the mean hourly pay of men working at the company.
LloydsPharmacy’s gender pay gap is above average, with data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showing that the national median gender pay gap for full-time employees in April 2021 was 7.9%.
For full-time pharmacists, the ONS data says the national median gender pay gap sits at 8.3% in favour of men — although female pharmacists working part-time are paid a median 3.3% more than part-time male pharmacists.
LloydsPharmacy, which is owned by Aurelius, is the second largest pharmacy multiple in the UK, with around 1,400 branches and approximately 17,000 employees.
Paul Day, director of the Pharmacists’ Defence Association, which represents pharmacists working at the company, said it was “worrying to see the gap between median hourly pay for women and median hourly pay for men increase”.
“However, equal pay is a symmetrical law, meaning just as men should not get more pay than women, neither should women get more pay than men,” he said.
“It is therefore equally worthy of investigation that, according to the latest report, the median bonus paid to women is 122% higher than the median bonus paid to men; and that the gap between the proportion who received bonuses grew from 2.6% to 23.0%.”
Day added that, although “women constitute almost two thirds of pharmacists”, they are least represented in the highest paid jobs.
“Good employers need to look beyond the key figures, which must be reported, understand the reasons for any differences and put in place actions to improve equality,” he said.
LloydsPharmacy Clinical Homecare, which manages patient care at home and reports its pay gap separately, reported a gender pay gap in favour of women, with female employees’ median hourly pay being 21% higher than their male counterparts.
For the same year, Boots reported a median hourly gender pay gap of 2.7% in favour of men.
Since 2017, companies with 250 or more employees have been required to report their gender pay gap on an annual basis.
In a report published on 8 February 2022, the House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee called for the government to introduce similar mandatory reporting for ethnicity pay gaps by April 2023.
LloydsPharmacy was approached for comment, but did not respond in time for publication.