The law requires every employer to draft a gender equality plan

The Act on Equality between Women and Men obliges every employer with at least 30 employees, to draft a gender equality plan. Salary survey is the statutory part of the plan. Equality plan must be drafted in cooperation with the employee representative and the drafting work has to follow the guidelines of the Act on Co-operation within Undertakings.

What does the Act on Equality between Women and Men say?

  • Prohibited discrimination is treating women and men differently on the basis of gender, parenthood or family responsibilities, or for reasons of pregnancy or childbirth.
  • Prohibited discrimination is also factually positioning somebody in a less favourable position on the basis of gender but for reasons appearing neutral.
  • Practice is not discriminatory if it aims at advancing gender equality.
  • The act obliges the employer to promote equality in working life.
  • The employer must ensure, for example, that job vacancies attract applications from both women and men, and that both genders are equally positioned in different jobs and that they are offered equal opportunities for career advancement.
  • The employer shall promote equality in pay and in other terms of employment, facilitate reconciliation of family and working life and ensure that occurence of discrimination based on gender is prevented in advance.

Gender equality plan illustrates the present situation and the company’s targets

The employer shall promote equality by drafting and implementing a gender equality plan if the company has at least 30 employees. The plan may be incorporated in the company’s personnel and training plan or in the labour protection action plan.

The gender equality plan must include:

  • An assessment of the gender equality situation in the workplace, including details of men and women positioned in different jobs and a review on the classification, pay and pay differences of the jobs of men and women.
  • Measures to promote gender equality and to achive equality in pay.
  • A review of the measures already implemented within the equality plan and their results.

A good gender equality plan answers the following questions:

  • How top management positions are divided between men and women?
  • How male and female directors/managers are distributed in different sectors?
  • How men and women are divided at different levels of the organisation?
  • If these distributions are not in balance, what are the reasons for it?
  • What kind of recruitment channels and job titles are used?
  • Who are encouraged to apply for vacant jobs?
  • What are the jobs with highest pay?
  • What kind of employee benefits are offered and to whom?
  • What kind of free time activities the company organises and who participates in them?
  • What kind of training is offered and to whom?
  • How family leaves are distributed?
  • Is everyone encouraged to take family leave?
  • What was the situation the year before, what measures were taken and what were their results?