Only with fair wages and good working conditions can companies secure their urgently needed skilled workers. Fair pay also means paying regardless of gender, age, disability or religious affiliation. The UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK recognises companies that have already understood this. They are well ahead of their competitors!
Hubertus Heil, Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Patron for the Universal Fair Pay Check 2021 in Germany
ANALYZE your position – DEVELOP your measures – LEAD by example
To zero in three phases: Universal Fair Pay Check
The aim of the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK is to close all internal pay gaps in three phases and to implement fair pay for all employees. Under the patronage of Federal Minister of Labor Hubertus Heil, companies enter into an active exchange on fair pay, analyze their pay gaps and - depending on the starting point - implement various interlinked measures and enter into regular monitoring. The organizations are accompanied by the FPI in analyzing their pay data, implementing fair pay, and adopting appropriate measures. In the process, progress is regularly reviewed.
Throughout the whole process, the focus is on sharing best practices: right from the start, companies and organizations share their experiences and challenges in expertise workshops, and discuss suitable tools and methods, from analysis through to closing all pay gaps.
The UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK also brings together the world's best legislative initiatives into a single process: The pay analyses from Switzerland, the standardization procedure from Iceland, and the transparency offensive from the UK.
The UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK is registered as an EU certification mark and explained in 150 seconds on our YouTube channel.
ANALYZE your position
DEVELOP your measures
LEAD by example
At the start of the Universal Fair Pay Check, organizations examine their pay structures. As part of the analysis, the payroll system and the corresponding components are assessed to see whether they reflect the company ethos. In the analysis, those factors that influence remuneration are broken down, for example, role, department, or length of service. Furthermore, the effect of variables that should not affect remuneration, such as sex, for example, is calculated. The list of variables from the Fair Pay Matrix can serve as the basis.
The analysis is carried out on the basis of the organization’s internal data, and it provides the foundation for a precise determination of all further steps necessary to implement fair pay. From the analysis, it is apparent how the whole spectrum of employees in the organization is distributed over the various salary levels. In particular, using such data flags up the challenges specific to the organization in the implementation of equality and fair pay, and determines the appropriate methods and instruments for closing any identified gaps.
The organization can choose its own form of analysis. Suitable tools for calculating the pay gaps can be found in the FPI Tool Compass. All companies and organizations are invited to share Best Practice: they will receive our Best Practice Arguments, access to our Expertise Pool, and Best Practice Insights. Companies and organizations can discuss suitable tools and methods in Fair Pay Workshops.
Requirements for achieving the status of Universal Fair Pay Analyst:
- The organization carries out an analysis of the pay structures for all its employees.
- At the very least, this analysis will calculate the unadjusted and adjusted gender pay gaps (in respect of basic salary, bonuses, and total remuneration). It is useful to then identify further pay gaps on the basis of demographic factors such as age or ethnic origin.
The unadjusted gender pay gap shows the percentage difference between the average gross hourly pay for women and men.
The adjusted gender pay gap shows the percentage difference between the average gross hourly pay for women and men in comparable positions – taking into account the variables of role, level, and requirements. The calculation is undertaken using multiple regression analysis on the basis of all employee data. If it is not possible to include all employees in the calculation, the FPI must be notified of the reasons why.
- The organization formulates suitable measures for closing the calculated gaps.
- In a written Fair Pay Commitment, the organization undertakes to implement fair pay and transparency. The organization can set itself additional goals over and above this.
- All the necessary data and measures are made available to the FPI for checking. In this phase, all the details from the organization are treated confidentially and are not published.
In the Developer phase, organizations apply the policies formulated in Phase 1 for implementing a fair pay structure. Here, organizations document the implementation process for the individual measures and check the effectiveness of the measures regularly (at least once a year). If a measure does not prove expedient, it is improved.
The aim in this phase of the check is to achieve an adjusted gender pay gap of zero percent. This means that all employees in the same and comparable positions are paid the same.
Requirements for achieving the status of Universal Fair Pay Developer:
- The organization implements the measures that have been set out and reports regularly to the FPI – at least once a year – on how the implementation is progressing.
- The organization documents the implementation process for the measures as a building block in the regular effectiveness review.
- The organization achieves an adjusted gender pay gap of +1 to -1 percent. On request, the adjusted gender pay gap can be published.
Phase 3 of the Universal Fair Pay Check is achieved once the organization has clearly lowered the unadjusted gender pay gap, the value is between -10 and +10 percent, and monitoring shows a continuous narrowing of the organization’s internal pay gap. The objective is for the company to continue its efforts, aiming for an unadjusted gender pay gap of around zero percent.
Organizations with Universal Fair Pay Leader status show that they are actively addressing their salary structures and the processes for recruitment and promotion, reconciliation policies, and the organizational culture. Successful implementation of measures is made transparent and is effective publicity as part of strategic organizational communication.
Achieving the status of Universal Fair Pay Leader is a sustainable goal and a milestone on the way towards fair pay. Depending on the starting point, organizations need several years to close the pay gap entirely and counteract any renewed widening of the income gap over the long term.
Throughout, the organization is given advice and support on a step-by-step basis over a longer period of time. Sharing Best Practice with other companies and organizations takes place routinely, in Expertise Workshops and targeted Best Practice Insights. The process and certification of an organization is not contingent upon its size, sites, organizational form, or respective statutory obligations.
Requirements for achieving the status of Universal Fair Pay Leader:
- The organization shows an unadjusted gender pay gap from +10 to -10 percent.
- By continuing to implement existing measures and developing new or adjusted measures, the organization aims to achieve an unadjusted gender pay gap of around zero percent.
- The organization engages in sharing Best Practices with other organizations.
- The organization communicates openly and ensures that its efforts in relation to fair pay, as well as the level of its gender pay gap, are transparent in internal and external communications.
- The organization continues to analyze its own pay structures on a regular basis.
For 2021/22, the following companies were awarded as Universal Fair Pay Analyst:
For 2021/22, the following companies were awarded as Universal Fair Pay Developer: ---
For 2021/22, the following companies were awarded as Universal Fair Pay Leaders:
- Landspítali - the National University Hospital of Iceland: with an unadjusted gender pay gap of 4.7 percent and an adjusted gender pay gap of 0.8 percent.
- Reykjavík Energy: with an unadjusted gender pay gap of 7 percent and an adjusted gender pay gap of 0.3 percent.
Allianz does not allow any differences in pay for men and women in comparable roles. Salaries are therefore checked very carefully and adjusted. For us, the focus is on bringing more women into management roles and into better-paid positions. This is why we specifically promote female talent and use the precise analysis provided by the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK to identify additional measures.
Kathrin Janicke, Head of Rewards & Performance, Allianz Deutschland AG
In the name of Reykjavik Energy, I declare our full commitment to the certification process. The aim of the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK is aligned perfectly with our current goals in relation to equal pay, with both the actual income differential and the adjusted gender pay gap being measured.
Sólrún Kristjánsdóttir, Head of Human Resources, Reykjavik Energy
It is inconceivable to me how organisations can still tolerate a gender pay gap in 2020. To bring about the long overdue change, we must no longer ignore the bad state of affairs, but clearly call it out. For me, arguing for transparency and closing all pay gaps make perfect sense.
Lasse Rheingans, CEO/ Founder, Rheingans Digital Enabler
What prompted us to check our salaries was an article about Henrike and the FPI – otherwise it wouldn’t have occurred to me. Now we’ve worked out fair structures, I’m glad that Covid-19 has given us the time for this project. And what’s more, it’s fun!
Scumeck Sabottka, CEO/ Founder, MCT Agentur GmbH
Anyone wanting to score points as an attractive employer in the highly competitive labour market must guarantee equal opportunities, and that includes fair pay. The UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK is an outstanding opportunity for businesses to gain a competitive advantage.
Rudolf Kast, founder of KAST.DIE PERSONALMANUFAKTUR
In our day-to-day consultancy business, for several years we have seen an increasing interest in fair pay: a desire for in-depth analyses, active adaptation of HR processes and increasing demands in terms of communication with colleagues. We’re pleased that with the Fair Pay Innovation Lab, we can now offer independent certification. This marks a further milestone we’ve achieved.
Florian Frank, Senior Director, Head of Talent & Rewards, Germany and Austria, Willis Towers Watson
Digitalisation and innovation have always been part of our DNA. But being one step ahead doesn’t stop at technology – it also means that at esentri, all employees are paid fairly, and all have the same opportunities, without exception. We use the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK to do that and it’s how we build the future based on our culture and our values!
Robert Szilinski, CEO, esentri AG
Fair pay concerns all of us. Our evaluation methods and an extensive and globally consistent job description manual form the basis for discrimination-free pay structures. Plus, with the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK we can have the results independently certified.
Thomas Gruhle, Head of Workforce Products CE, Mercer Deutschland GmbH
It is a great honor for us, and at the same time a recognition of the quality of our solution, that FPI has chosen us as a partner in the Universal Fair Pay Check. We are also particularly proud of the latest version of our solution, which now supports non-binary definitions of gender and the use of any demographic factor, because equality does not stop at gender.
Margrét V. Bjarnadóttir, founder of PayAnalytics
At Allianz, we take a strong stance for equality and fairness, and gender equality has been at the top of our agenda for a long time. This includes colleagues doing the same jobs deserving the same pay – irrespective of gender. Therefore, our ambition is to remove any existing pay gap. At Allianz Germany, we are well on track with a current equal pay gap close to 1%.
Renate Wagner, Vorstand Allianz
Reykjavik Energy managed to close its adjusted gender pay gap in the year 2017 and has kept it closed ever since. In 2018, the company received the Icelandic Equal Pay Certification, which confirms that it does not discriminate in its remuneration strategies and pay structure. I see participation in the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK as an opportunity to measure ourselves in new ways. It focuses not only on the adjusted gender pay gap but also on the unadjusted pay gap and other pay gaps stemming from different backgrounds. These are measures that address the fundamental causes of inequalities.
Víðir Ragnarsson, Head of Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives, Reykjavik Energy
Being part of the UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK is a commitment to steadily improve in the field of equal rights. For me it is important that people view Equal Pay as an ongoing journey to fulfill the fundamental human right to be valued for one’s skills and abilities without gender-based discrimination.
Páll Matthíasson, CEO, Landspítali - The National University Hospital of Iceland
Equal opportunities: the key to success
All around the world, some people are still earning less than others – in the same company and for the same or equivalent work. There are many reasons for this. Whether someone is a man or a woman, whether they have children, their origin, their faith, and whom they love – all these are factors that can affect salary. But unjustified differences in income are unfair and not very smart. Fair pay has an extremely effective domino effect on all other areas of business: if all employees have the same opportunities, they are more satisfied. Motivation increases, staff turnover drops. Diversity and inclusion increase across the board. The company becomes more attractive to new blood and to new skilled employees. That saves a lot of costs internally and makes for happier clients, stakeholders and investors. All in all, the company becomes more successful.
A bouquet of policies: a rainbow of opportunities!
Most firms have already recognized the business case for equality and equal opportunities. They are prepared to spend good money on becoming more diverse and more inclusive because those who want to achieve a great deal often also commit a great deal. However, many measures do not automatically lead to the objective being achieved faster. Effectiveness is often very difficult to assess, and the monitoring of success is often vague. But there is one excellent way of accurately gauging the success of all measures: Fair Pay.
Whether a mentoring program, unconscious bias training, or the advancement of women – if you analyze the success of measures in terms of whether there are still differences in income, this will give you both an objective criterion and an effective lever. That is because regular analysis of the payroll system shows very clearly what works and where adjustments are needed. So if the various measures are bundled together and focused solely on a fair remuneration system, the objective will be achieved faster.
Fair pay closes all gaps
Most companies and organizations prefer to start with the gender pay gap: there is often a lack of data on types of discrimination such as those based on ethnic origin or sexual orientation, whereas salary data for female and male employees are generally available and can be analyzed to calculate pay gaps. We encourage organizations to calculate other pay gaps too – but we know that those who work consistently for fair pay automatically create equality of opportunity for all.
Compensating existing income differences between men and women initially means adjusting salaries. Avoiding fresh divergences in the future means creating pay structures that are neutral, objective, and free of discrimination. And so in the end, everyone is paid fairly – regardless of where the employees come from, who they love or what they believe in. Thus when the gender pay gap is closed, all other pay gaps are closed too.
End the certification chaos
It is true that all around the world, there are various ways for companies and organizations to have remuneration strategies certified – and to receive recognition for these efforts. But until now, none of the test methods has encompassed everything undertaken to achieve fair pay. The certification chaos is particularly cumbersome for those who have the very best intentions and want to ensure fair pay for all employees at all their sites worldwide, regardless of local legislation and the corresponding test methods, the size of the company, or the form of the organization. In short: a remuneration system that is fair to all.
The UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK closes this gap – and unites the best statutory initiatives in the world to form a single method: the pay analyses from Switzerland, the standardization process from Iceland, and the transparency initiative from Great Britain.
The UNIVERSAL FAIR PAY CHECK was created by the FPI Fair Pay Innovation Lab gGmbH. The FPI ensures equal opportunities, in every company. Our goal: Fair pay for all people in the world.
Companies and organizations that participate in the Universal Fair Pay Check receive the following services in addition to support and guidance through all three phases of the check:
- Invitations to all our events
- Best Practice Insights from other companies
- Access to the Fair Pay Publications (Argumentarien)
- Access to the FPI Tool Compass
- Networking with other compensation experts
- Assistance in the search for a suitable analysis partner
- Discounted access to Fair Pay Expertise Workshops
- If desired, inclusion in the FPI public relations
- As well as a signed book copy of "Über Geld spricht man" by Henrike von Platen
When sending the application form, a one-time processing fee of 250.00 Euros is due – regardless of the size and number of employees.
The fees for the annual certification are calculated in the first year (basic fee) and in the following years (resumption fee) depending on the number of employees. The analysis is not included in the certification process.
|Number of employees||Processing fee||Basic fee||Resumption fee (yearly basis)|
|1-49||250.00 €||500.00 €||375.00 €|
|50-249||250.00 €||800.00 €||600.00 €|
|250-499||250.00 €||1,000.00 €||750.00 €|
|500-999||250.00 €||1,300.00 €||975.00 €|
|1,000-4,999||250.00 €||1,800.00 €||1,350.00 €|
|5,000-9,999||250.00 €||2,200.00 €||1,650.00 €|
|10,000-24,999||250.00 €||2,700.00 €||2,025.00 €|
|25,000-99,999||250.00 €||3,200.00 €||2,400.00 €|
|over 100,000||250.00 €||3,500.00 €||2,625.00 €|
Applying for the Universal Fair Pay Check is a two-step process. In the first step, you fill out the form below.
With today's form submission, you declare your goal to implement fair pay and provide information on whether analyses or certifications have already been carried out in your organization.
To make your goal public, you can provide a commitment statement for the communication of the FPI. In this case, the FPI will also publicly name your company. This can also be submitted later.
It only takes a few minutes to complete this form.
The costs for certification can be found in our cost overview above.
As soon as we have your data, we will send you a detailed questionnaire. This will serve as the basis for assignment to one of the three phases of the certification process (Universal Fair Pay Analyst, Universal Fair Pay Developer, or Universal Fair Pay Leader).