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Asos publishes first Ethnicity Pay Gap data

By Rachel Douglass

4 Oct 2021

Business

Image: Asos Facebook

Multibrand retailer Asos has released its first Ethnicity Pay Gap (EPG) data report, stating the 2021 median pay for ethnic minorities is 5.9 percent higher than their White counterparts. According to the report, the result is a 21.2 percent improvement in the overall ethnicity pay gap year on year.

Overall, Asos’ ethnicity pay gap has improved by 21.2 percent since 2020, to minus 5.9 percent, however, it noted pay gaps between different ethnic groups. Median pay gaps of 13.4 percent for Black/Black British staff members and 14.1 percent for Mixed/Multiple Ethnic Groups were noted, in comparison to White counterparts.

The retailer recognised the gaps are related to the underrepresentation of ethnic minorities at leadership levels, with seven percent of the group in combined leadership roles while 19 percent make up the overall workforce.

Gender pay gap report

The EPG report was released alongside the company’s gender pay gap, which stated a 1.7 percent increase to 32.3 percent since 2019/20. Asos suggested the gap is related to women being underrepresented in leadership and technology positions - the higher paid roles - with a high portion of women in entry-level roles within the Customer Care and Commercial teams.

“We’re publishing our ethnicity pay gap alongside our gender pay gap today because we believe it’s a vital step towards understanding and improving ethnic minority representation within Asos and the wider industry,” said Nick Beighton, CEO of Asos, in the report. “While we have made some significant improvements in some areas over the last 12 months, we know we still have a long way to go. We are using this data to help us lay the foundations of a truly inclusive culture and create a people experience that is like no other.”

He continued: “It is our belief that our goals and progress should be made public in this way so we can be held accountable. We hope that other businesses commit to doing the same to encourage change across our industry.”

Fashion with Integrity goals

The extensive data has been released in line with Asos’ new diversity targets, unveiled in September as part of its 2030 Fashion with Integrity goals and the company’s ongoing corporate responsibility programme. Specifically, its Be Diverse goal states the retailer is aiming for over 15 percent minority representation across its leadership team by 2023, as well as 50 percent female representation, to mirror UK demographics.

Asos has already undertaken a number of initiatives to improve its representation, including a partnership with the Race at Work Charter. It also formed the Future Leaders development programme, launched earlier in the year, prioritising over 200 ethnic minority women in mid-level roles across the company. It is currently working with 71 individuals, with more signed up to take part in the programme in January.