Gender Pay Gap Report 2018

2018 Gender Pay Gap Report for RWS Translations Ltd

This report is based on pay data at the ‘snapshot date’ of 5 April 2018 and the bonuses we paid over the 12 months before.

Our gender split in the 2018 reporting period is 30% male to 70% female, in a total of 350 employees.

Pay and bonus gap
Mean Median
Hourly pay 29.63% 19.63%
Bonus 42.94% 52.38%


Proportion of employees receiving a bonus payment
Male Female
49.11% 27.52%


Pay quartiles showing the gender distribution in each pay quartile


Male Female
Lower quartile 28.74% 71.26%
Lower middle quartile 17.05% 82.95%
Upper middle quartile 21.84% 78.16%
Top quartile 53.41% 46.59%


As reported in 2018, the nature of our business is unusual. As a translation company, we employ large numbers of language graduates, who nationally are predominantly female. They fulfil the majority of our production, administration and checking roles as per the first three pay quartiles. Due to the scientific and technical subject matter of our translations, we employ staff who have qualifications in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in addition to language skills for the higher-paid translator roles. Women still make up only 14% of the national STEM workforce overall, hence the levelling out of the gender distribution in the top pay quartile.

According to the Office of National Statistics 2016, the national median gender pay gap was 18.1%. Our overall median gender pay gap in April 2018 hit 19.63%, an appreciable movement in the year. The fact that we employ more women in the lower quartiles is a major driver in our gender pay gap. However, the year has seen a small increase in the number of men in lower quartiles, which has contributed to reducing our gender pay gap.

We must acknowledge that there has been no meaningful change in the top quartile. This is largely because the cohort in the top quartile is mainly made up of highly-paid staff translators with a traditionally low turnover.

Last year, we asserted our determination to address our gender pay gap. We said we wanted to tackle the under-representation of women in our science and engineering roles and were working with local schools to encourage girls to combine their languages with a technical subject, whilst encouraging boys to continue their language studies. We had already introduced a work experience programme to give pupils and undergraduates insight into the roles available within RWS Translations Ltd and let them try them at first hand. In addition, we have continued to offer our language graduates the opportunity for progression to staff translator positions by way of sponsorship to study for scientific and technical qualifications via the Open University and day release courses at college.

Turning to our bonus pay gap, bonus pay in line with the guidelines includes long service awards. We continue to run a voucher-based recognition scheme that awards staff for each five years of service. The vouchers are typically for relatively small amounts of between £50 and £250.  However, when these are calculated together with performance-related bonuses and sales commissions of a considerably higher value, it distorts the bonus pay gap. This year, removing from our calculations the long service awards and also the bounty we pay for introducing new recruits, gives a mean bonus pay gap of 27.99% but a median bonus pay gap of 55.88%. This does again indicate the under-representation of women in our scientific and engineering roles. We are confident that men and women have an equal opportunity to participate in and earn a bonus and that as our steps above bear fruit, this gap too will be narrowed.

We are encouraged by the broad improvements in these figures, but we are aware that moves in the right direction are a long way from eliminating our gender pay gap.  To continue progress, we will sustain a number of recommended initiatives, which we now have in place. These include:

  • Skills-based assessment in recruitment
  • Structured interviews for recruitment and promotions
  • Improving workplace flexibility
  • Encouraging Shared Parental Leave
  • Recruiting returners
  • Leadership development processes

In all, we are pleased to see that we have made progress compared with last year and that we have in place a set of initiatives which should continue to improve the picture. However, we also recognize that much remains to be done.


Desmond Glass

Group CFO, RWS

29 March 2019


NB – Below are our figures for 2017.

Figures for 2017

Pay and bonus gap
Mean Median
Hourly pay 32.07% 24.81%
Bonus 48.28% 81.96%


Proportion of employees receiving a bonus payment
Male Female
32.43% 30.63%


Pay quartiles showing the gender distribution in each pay quartile
Male Female
Lower quartile 24.18% 75.82%
Lower middle quartile 15.56% 84.44%
Upper middle quartile 25.27% 74.73%
Top quartile 51.11% 48.89%