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New research reveals that most UK workers aren’t ready for salary transparency

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New research reveals that most UK workers aren’t ready for salary transparency

A recent survey conducted by business electricity comparison site, Love Energy Savings showed that the majority of UK employees don’t want any salary information to be made common knowledge throughout their businesses. When asked which approach to salary transparency they would prefer in their company,

  • 65.8% of UK respondents said they didn’t want any salary information shared within their company.
  • Only 26.9% of respondents wanted everyone’s salaries shared,
  • Just 7.3% wanted to know the salaries of senior management staff only.

The debate about salary transparency

Love Energy Savings set out to gather data about salary transparency to test the notion that lifting the veil around staff salaries will make a positive change in all businesses.

The conversation about salary transparency began when social media management platform Buffer famously disclosed staff salaries to the public via an online spreadsheet. In the month following their publicised adoption of salary transparency, they were inundated with twice the number of job applications they normally received.

The success of Buffer’s gamble sparked plenty of debate between business leaders as to whether it should be rolled out on a mass scale. Some leaders — like CEO of AMV BBDO, Ian Pearman — embraced the idea and implemented it in their own companies. Pearman said the key reason to adopt it was that it helped to dismantle pay inequality, particularly any differences in pay that correlate with gender or race.

However, others found that the positive buzz around sharing salary details internally wasn’t enough to convince their employees that it was the right decision. SEO management platform MarketGoo came close to rolling out a salary transparency policy — until their employees voted against it.

As the new research from Love Energy Savings suggests most workers aren’t yet willing to embrace a change that makes salary information freely available to everyone in the company, despite the potential improvements in pay equality and staff satisfaction.

Why employees might not be ready for salary transparency

One explanation for workers’ hesitancy to embrace a transparent salary policy is that it means their own salaries will be on display.

For professionals that have negotiated a higher salary than others, it could mean that they’re targeted by peers that earn less than them, which — if not handled properly — can lead to messy internal conflicts.

For employers, salary transparency is particularly risky if their company has a history of pay inequality. Not only would it be costly to “level the playing field” if businesses feel obligated to compensate workers that argue they’re underpaid compared to colleagues, but it could have a lasting impact on employee productivity. A study conducted at the University of Michigan found that when taking on a task that involved counting dots, participants performed worse when they knew they were being paid less than others.

With these issues in mind, it’s easy to see why established businesses risk suffering long-term damage to morale and productivity after sharing pay information without a clear salary policy in place.

It’s not a lost cause

Phil Foster, Managing Director of Love Energy Savings, said:

Our research shows that workers aren’t yet convinced by the idea of salary transparency, which to me suggests that businesses should include employees in the conversation.

 “It’s possible that some workers anticipate a backlash from having their salaries revealed to others, a fear that currently trumps the potential good that transparency can bring. Businesses that want to be innovative need to speak to their employees about change; firstly, to see whether it’s right for them, and secondly, to help alleviate concerns that employees might have.

 “Whether salary transparency is right for your business or not, the most important thing is that staff have their say.” 

Business

Hyundai Motor revises down fourth-quarter operating profit after costly Kona EV recall

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Hyundai Motor revises down fourth-quarter operating profit after costly Kona EV recall 1

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co revised down its fourth-quarter operating profit by nearly a fifth after a costly $900 million recall to replace battery systems in some 82,000 electric vehicles globally.

It said on Thursday that the quarter’s profit came in at 1.3 trillion won ($1.2 billion), down from the 1.6 trillion won it had initially reported in late January.

The recall mostly concerns the Kona EV, Hyundai’s biggest-selling electric car which was first recalled late last year for a software upgrade after a spate of fires.

Hyundai’s Kona EV uses batteries manufactured by LG Chem Ltd’s wholly owned battery division LG Energy Solution.

($1 = 1,123.5800 won)

(Reporting by Heekyong Yang and Joyce Lee; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Edwina Gibbs)

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Ladbrokes owner holds off on dividend even as profit jumps

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Ladbrokes owner holds off on dividend even as profit jumps 2

(Reuters) – Ladbrokes owner Entain said COVID-19 uncertainties kept it from declaring a dividend despite a jump in 2020 earnings and that it was expecting online volumes to ease when shops re-open after surging during lockdowns.

Entain, which rejected MGM’s $11 billion takeover offer in January, posted an 11% rise in 2020 core earnings to 843.1 million pounds as it benefited from a 50% jump in online profit.

However, the company said given the ongoing uncertainty as a result of COVID-19, the board does not consider it prudent to pay a dividend at this time.

While the pandemic led to the cancellation of sporting and other events and hindered betting in physical shops, a surge in online betting during lockdowns encouraged the FTSE 100 firm to bump up its profit outlook twice last year.

Entain said it had started the year with good momentum in line with expectations and hope to see normality returning over the coming months.

The company also said while it was expecting online volumes to ease when shops in core online territories re-open, the trends seen during the pandemic could remain positive for the global online gaming market. ($1 = 0.7165 pounds)

(Reporting by Muvija M and Chris Peters in Bengaluru)

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Exxon and Macquarie in $11.7 billion U.S. lawsuit over gas contract

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Exxon and Macquarie in $11.7 billion U.S. lawsuit over gas contract 3

HOUSTON (Reuters) – Exxon Mobil Corp is suing Australia’s Macquarie Energy in a Texas court in a $11.7 billion lawsuit over missed deliveries during last month’s winter freeze in the central United States.

The lawsuit filed by Exxon’s natural gas business said the massive storm and state declarations of emergencies prevented it from fulfilling its supply commitment to Macquarie Energy, the second largest U.S. gas marketer.

Exxon is asking the Texas court to rule that the massive storm, caused when an arctic air mass swept the central United States, was a natural disaster.

Such a ruling would allow Exxon to break its contract with Macquarie without a penalty, overriding a demand from the Australian company that Exxon cover the wholesaler’s $11.7 billion in damages for missed deliveries.

U.S. gas demand and prices soared last month when freezing temperatures hit as far south as Texas, where 4.3 million homes lost power.

A Macquarie spokesperson in Australia declined immediate comment. Exxon did not reply to a request for comment after normal business hours.

The cold sent spot gas at a west Texas hub to $203.50 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) on Feb. 16. It also prompted Texas and Louisiana to declare emergencies and direct gas supplies to the states’ power generators.

Australia’s Macquarie was one of the largest winners in the cold snap, benefiting from record U.S. natural gas prices. It could collect a $317 million profit from a weather related gas binge, analysts said.

Macquarie had rejected Exxon’s own declaration of a natural disaster, the lawsuit said, but the Australian company later issued its own force majeure declaration over gas it had agreed to provide Exxon in Texas.

(Reporting by Gary McWilliams; editing by Jane Wardell)

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