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Superdrug gender pay gap widens to 11%

Superdrug’s pay gap increased by almost five percentage points in the last financial year, while Boots maintained equal pay, new reports show.

The multiple’s 2023/24 gender pay gap report revealed that Superdrug saw an increase in its gender pay gap for the first time since 2020/21.

Women working at the company in 2023/24 earned “89p for every £1 that men earn when comparing median hourly pay” – an 11.4% difference – the report said. 

Superdrug reported a median 6.7% pay difference in favour of male employees in 2022/23, meaning that the new report signals a 4.7 percentage point jump. 

Superdrug said the “main reason” for the gap is that the company “over [indexes] when employing women in our organisation, with a headcount that is 78% female”.

“Traditionally women make up a larger part of the UK part-time workforce. By contrast, most of the men we employ are in middle or senior management, higher-paid roles, leading to a gender pay gap. 

“Our pay structures and processes mean we are confident that women and men who work for us are paid equally when doing equal jobs,” it said. 

 

Another year with no pay gap for Boots

 

The Equality Act 2010 requires all companies with 250 or more employees to submit a gender pay gap report every year by April 4.

Boots’ 2023/24 gender pay gap report revealed than for the second year in a row female Boots staff were paid the same as male staff, with a median hourly pay 0% lower than men’s.

The report also revealed that 71% of the highest-paid Boots staff were women in 2024/25.

Boots managing director Seb James said that “much of this progress” made by the multiple “has been achieved due to our continued focus on making sure women are given equal opportunity to become leaders of our business”.

He added that Boots continues “to focus on wider actions to make our workplace more inclusive” and is an accredited “menopause-friendly employer” that covers the cost of employees' HRT prescriptions. 

Looking ahead to next year he said Boots would “offer better support surrounding fertility and baby loss”.

  

Rowlands pay gap favours women

 

Phoenix Healthcare – the wholesaler that owns Rowlands Pharmacy – bucked the trend for reported median hourly pay with a gap of 5.2% in favour of women in 2023/24.

This is up 3.2 percentage points from last year, when Phoenix reported that the median average woman working for the multiple earned 2% more than her male colleagues.

However, women earned 95p for every £1 that men earned when comparing median bonus pay.

A Phoenix spokesperson told C+D this morning (April 5) that this year it will review its “recruitment practices further – including testing for language in our job adverts…to minimise gender bias”.

The multiple added that it will also track “the number of parents returning to work after maternity/paternity leave” to support “flexible working requests”.

 

Day Lewis’ pay gap stagnates

 

For the second year in a row, female Day Lewis employees earned 1.5% less than male employees. 

Women’s median hourly pay was 98p versus £1 for men, with a bonus pay gap of 83p for women versus £1 for men resulting in 16.8% lower median bonus pay.

Day Lewis was approached by C+D for comment.

Meanwhile, C+D’s latest Salary Survey found that male non-manager pharmacists earned over £4,000 more than their female colleagues on average in 2023.

At the time Shilpa Shah, chief executive of Community Pharmacy North East London (CP NEL), told C+D that it is “disappointing” that the gender pay gap is still a problem in 2024, adding that this “should be a thing of the past”.

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