Corporate Information

Gender Pay Gap data report as of March 2023 and Action plan for 2024

The Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (CoCH) is committed to embedding equality and human rights across the whole organisation and to reducing inequality between any of the protected characteristics in the workplace.  Under the Gender Pay Gap Regulations 2017, CoCH is required to report annually on gender pay gap, utilising a reporting framework set out by the Government Equalities Office (GEO) and to register with the GEO and submit its annual Gender Pay Gap Report (GPGR).

Gender Pay gap definition:

The gender pay gap is a figure that shows the difference in the average pay between all men and women in a workforce. The gender pay gap is the difference between women’s and men’s average salary earnings, expressed as a percentage of men’s earnings. It is a measure of women’s overall position in the paid workforce and does not compare like roles.

How is this different to Equal Pay?

In contrast, ‘equal pay’ is a more specific legal concept that deals with the pay differences between men and women carrying out comparable jobs. While the gender pay gap focuses on an average across the whole organisation across a variety of different role and pay bands. A large difference in the gender pay gap does not necessarily indicate unequal pay, which is determined by what people earn in comparable jobs.

What will the Gender Pay Gap show?

The gender pay gap can indicate that there is some practice to address with regards to if women are in roles that are paid less than men, and potentially, the reasons for this. This may be due to varied reasons, examples of which are listed below. An organisation can look to put together an action plan to improve their Gender Pay Gap.

Examples of potential gender pay gap dynamics in organisations:

  • discrimination and bias in hiring and pay decisions
  • women and men working in different industries and different jobs, with female-dominated industries and jobs attracting lower wages
  • women’s disproportionate share of unpaid caring and domestic work
  • lack of workplace flexibility to accommodate caring and other responsibilities, especially in senior roles
  • women’s greater time out of the workforce impacting career progression and opportunities
  • lack of confidence among female staff seeking pay increases/leadership roles
  • occupational segregation
  • market-rate salaries. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with setting market-rate salaries, but when this happens in sectors typically dominated by male workers, a gender pay gap can easily surface as a result.

The range of reasons as to why gender pay gap exists across different organisations in all the workforce sectors is a complex issue.  It is important to note that a gender pay gap does not equate to the existence of an equal pay problem, though a gender pay gap may be a catalyst for organisations to look into any reasons as to why the gap exists.

CoCH Gender Pay Gap Report 2023:

The data tables below provide analysis on the Mandatory Gender Pay Gap Reporting for the 2022/23 financial year with the data as of 31st March 2023:

Table 1 displays the 2022 the mean (average) difference in hourly rate by gender and determines that women are paid £6.78 per hour less than their male colleagues, which is equivalent to a pay gap of 28.6%. This is an increase in the GPG of 2022 by £0.70 per hour.

In column 3, the median hourly rate by gender is also shown which demonstrates that the median figure for women is that they are paid £2.34 per hour less than men, which is equivalent to a pay gap of 13.57%.

Table 2 provides a gender make-up by quartile, of the whole workforce establishment. Quartile 1 represents staff paid on lower salaries, with Quartile 4 representing the highest paid cohort of employees. Women account for 68% in quartile 4. The total percentage of women across the whole organisation 87% (1), so quartile 4 shows an underrepresentation of women, with quartile 2 being 81% and quartile 3 84%

Table 1


Avg. Hourly Rate

Median Hourly Rate










Pay gap %



Table 2




Male %

Female %





















Table 3

Table 3 above provides a pay band-based representation of the workforce establishment, to adhere to GDPR, headcounts less than 6 are not displayed.

Table 4

 Difference in hourly rates between 5 neighbouring Trusts


Employer Size

% Difference in hourly rate (Mean)

% Difference in hourly rate (Median)

Countess of Chester Hospital NHS FT

5000 to 19,999



Cheshire & Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

1000 to 4999



Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

5000 to 19,999



East Cheshire NHS Trust

1000 to 4999



Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

5000 to 19,999



As compared to the 5 neighbouring Trusts in the region we rank 2nd highest for the mean difference in hourly pay rates and at a 16-point variance on this metric. This suggests there is significant work that still needs to be done to improve the mean percentage and reduce the hourly pay gap between men and women.

Bonus Pay

The two tables above provide information on bonus payments to employees and gender, including headcount (table 6) for this reporting period. It can be seen from table 5, that women were paid as a mean average £1160.02 and as a median there was no difference to their male counterparts, pay gaps of 14% and 20% respectively.

Table 5        

Average & Median Bonus



Avg. Pay

Median Pay










Pay Gap %











Table 6

Gender Employees Paid Bonus Total Relevant Employees %
Male 15.00 4618.00 0.32%
Female 42.00 1225.00 3.43%

GPG Action plan.

This plan is to go forward 1st January 2023 to 31st December 2024.



Primary Author(S):


Plan Endorsed By:

Sources of Information Underpinning the Plan:

Countess of Chester Hospital Trust


Surendra Shroff (Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Lead)

Nicola Price (Director of People & OD)

Gender Pay Gap 2023, Women’s Staff Network.


Actions GPG

Please specify which actions are different to current practice, and which are continuum

Please specify KPIs and timelines for monitoring the actions

How will the actions be sustainable

Action 1:

Undertake thorough analysis of workforce data especially where there is a gender pay gap, to better understand who is applying for and being appointed to roles and take steps to spot and address any patterns identified.

May 2024.

Improvements will be made and sustained through better communication, language including gender neutral adverts and branding.

Action 2:

Monitor and report on the male / female profile for applicants, shortlisted candidates and appointments, at all levels and across all occupations and working patterns.

March with quarterly reports to EDISG and POD.


This will be integrated with the GPG reporting function which should help the Trust take targeted action to reduce the gender pay gap where it exists.

Action 3:

Identify the gender split amongst different pay grades, and how the pay gaps vary between these pay grades across AFC and Medical pay scales.

May 2024.

This will be integrated with the GPG reporting function which should help the Trust take targeted action to reduce the gender pay gap at different levels and across different pay scales.

Action 4:

Establish focus groups to discuss why there are higher proportions of women in the lower quartiles and lower proportions in the higher quartiles.

April 2024.

Feedback gathered will be used to inform specific measures that can be taken to achieve a more balanced representation of women across lower and higher quartiles within the workforce.

Action 5:

Undertake work to investigate why more men than women are successful in being awarded Clinical Excellence Awards now called National Clinical Impact Award Scheme (NCIAS) and put in place a mechanism to encourage and support women doctors and consultants to apply for them.

May 2024.

This will be sustained through targeted and effective communication and raising awareness of the NCIAS including routine monitoring.

Action 6:

Establish a mechanism to inform and support activities of the Women’s Staff Network on gender specific HR issues and nominate an exec board sponsor to the network.

January 2024 – Ongoing.



This will be sustained through collaboration between the Women’s Staff Network, Comms, HR, Education, EDI, and OD.