How is bonus defined for the purposes of reporting an organisation's gender pay gap and gender bonus gap?

Under the draft Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017, as well as reporting the difference in pay (which includes bonus pay) between their male and female employees, employers must report on the difference in mean and median bonus pay and on the proportion of male and female employees who received bonus pay.

Bonus pay is defined broadly under the draft Regulations as any remuneration that:

  • is in the form of money, vouchers, securities, securities options, or interests in securities; and
  • relates to profit-sharing, productivity, performance, incentive or commission.

Overtime pay and redundancy pay (or other pay referable to termination) are not counted as bonus pay.

All bonus pay should be included in the calculations, regardless of whether the bonus is discretionary or contractual.

Bonuses paid in the form of securities, securities options and interests in securities should be included in the employer's calculations at the time they give rise to a liability to income tax, and it is the amount that is liable to income tax that should be included.

When a bonus is paid during the April pay period when the employer is capturing its gender pay gap data (as opposed to its gender bonus gap data), if the bonus relates to a period that is longer than the pay reference period, for example an annual bonus, it should be pro rated to reflect the length of the pay period.