Assessment of workplace equality conditions
The aim is that the measures included in the equality plan are ones that are important for promoting equality based on each workplace's situation and conditions. That is why the equality plan must be based on an assessment of the equality conditions in the workplace. The assessment consists of collecting data as a basis for the equality planning. The equality plan and the assessment that will be used as a foundation for the plan must cover the employers' full staff, and if required, the plan should also contain measures that relate to all staff members.
An equality plan must be made at least every two years. If an equality plan is made every year, there can be local agreements on carrying out a pay survey at least every three years.
Which issues should be covered in the equality assessment?
According to the Equality Act, the assessment of the equality conditions should include a survey with details of the employment of women and men in different jobs and a classification of jobs performed by women and men, the pay for those jobs and the differences in pay. This means that the law requires the assessment of the equality conditions in the workplace to also cover pay. More information about this can be found under Pay Surveys.
The pay is not the only thing that should be covered in the equality assessment. The assessment of the equality conditions can also be focused on, e.g., the application procedure, the division of duties between genders, career development, working conditions, personnel training, participation in working groups, opportunities to combine work and family life, e.g. taking parental leave and work arrangements that support this, the atmosphere at work, the occurrence of sexual and gender-based harassment, attitudes towards equality, leadership and occupational health and safety.
How to carry out the equality assessment?
When carrying out the assessment existing HR statistics can be used if they have been broken down according to gender. It is also important to find out how well employees find that equality has been achieved in the workplace. The views of the employees can be canvassed e.g. through a personnel survey and by discussing equality matters during department and workplace meetings. The equality survey can be carried out separately or as part of another survey on the atmosphere at work.
An equality survey can provide important information on the equality conditions in the workplace that it is different to access via other means. An example of this is a question on harassment. The electronic survey found on Equality Survey can be used for the equality survey. It is a free service which displays the answers as ready-made graphics.