Shell UK report reveals 18% gender pay gap in the company


Shell UK has an average gender pay gap of 18% in 2020, down from 18.7% in 2019, the Shell Group of Companies in the UK (Shell UK) has revealed in its first diversity pay gap report.

Men have traditionally made up the majority of the workforce in the oil and gas sector, which is reflected across each of the Shell companies in the UK and across Shell UK, where 66% of their employees are male and 34% female.

Sinead Lynch, Shell UK Country Chair, commented on the findings: “While we are making progress in building an inclusive workplace for all, we are not yet where we need to be.

“In a challenging year we have remained focused on closing the gender pay gap.

“At the same time, we recognise that to create a truly diverse culture in Shell we need to look beyond gender, which is why we are publishing our ethnicity pay gap data for the first time.

“By being transparent about our performance and holding ourselves to account we want to build a culture that attracts and retains the best talent for Shell in the UK.’’

A gender pay gap is defined as the difference in the average pay and bonuses of all men and women across an organisation.

According to the company, Shell UK has a gender pay gap because they have fewer women than men in senior leadership positions, and fewer women in specialist roles attracting higher levels of pay.

A gender pay gap also reflects wider societal issues such as relatively fewer women studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects at university.

According to the company, the improvement in their gender pay gap this year is mainly because of a higher number of women in senior positions.

Shell UK achieved its ambition to have 30% female senior leaders in the UK by 2020, reaching 32.6% this year, and according to the company they are on track to grow this to 35% by 2025.

For the first time, this report voluntarily includes data on the company’s ethnicity pay gap, which is 8.5%.

The ethnicity pay gap shows the difference in the average pay and bonuses between Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic and non- Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic employees across an organisation, expressed as a percentage of average non- Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic pay.

The 2020 Ethnicity Pay Gap calculation uses the same methodology as gender pay gap reporting, although is based on voluntary declarations of ethnicity by Shell UK employees, and is based on 75% of Shell UK employees declaring their ethnicity.

According to Shell UK, the main factor contributing to their ethnicity pay gap is that there are proportionately fewer Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic employees in senior roles which attract higher pay and higher bonuses.

They are taking action to increase the representation of ethnic minorities at Shell in the UK in line with the relevant UK working population.

This includes an aim to increase the number of employees recruited from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds and the introduction of recruitment aspirations for Black representation. 

According to Shell UK, the company will work towards achieving this by expanding the reach of their recruitment campaigns to attract more diverse applicants through external advocacy and outreach work and by sponsoring opportunities for people from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds.

They are also putting in place new development programmes to support more of their existing Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic employees to progress senior levels, including through mentoring and providing greater visibility of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic role models.

The full report can be read on the Shell UK website.