Gender Pay Gap Report

In 2017, the Government made it mandatory for all large organisations to report their gender pay gap. We welcomed this move as it was, and continues to be, an important step towards having a more diverse and inclusive railway.

This is the seventh year that we have published our gender pay gap report and our results show a decrease in our pay gap this year. The gender pay gap is the difference in average hourly rate of pay between our male and female employees across the whole organisation.

We remain fully committed to improving the gender diversity of our business and acknowledge that our pay gap will fluctuate over time as we increase the number of women working at all levels of the organisation.

2023 gender pay gap report

Our median* pay gap for 2023 is 9.3 per cent and represents a decrease of 1.6 percentage points from 2022. It’s the first time our pay gap has reached single digits which is a positive step forward. Our pay gap remains lower than the current UK pay gap of 14.3 per cent.

We continue to include information on our black, Asian and minority ethnic women and also examine the relationship between gender and age and how this impacts the pay gap.

The railway has for decades been a male dominated industry, but we are committed to changing this. We know that organisations with diverse workforces perform better, but only when there is an inclusive culture. Inclusion remains a core priority for us, and we have made great strides this year to support women’s physical and psychological safety, improve our facilities, and upskill our colleagues on allyship towards women. We are dedicated to continuing on this journey.

Michelle Handforth, Executive Sponsor of our Gender Matters Project

Gender pay gap and equal pay

The gender pay gap and equal pay are often confused, but the two are quite different.

The gender pay gap is the difference between the average pay of men compared to the average pay of women within an organisation, across all levels of the business. What this means in practice is that if women do more of the less well-paid jobs, the gender pay gap is usually bigger.

Equal pay, on the other hand, is the legal requirement for men and women to be paid the same for performing the same work or work of equal value. In 2015 Network Rail completely overhauled its management pay structure to deliver equality, fairness and transparency.

Transparent pay means that we can be confident that our gender pay gap is driven by the structure of our workforce and the concentration of males in more senior positions, rather than our pay structure, which is gender neutral by design.

This has helped us to focus our efforts on attracting and recruiting more women, retaining them within our workforce and progressing our female talent into the most senior roles within the business.

Previous gender pay gap reports

Related pages

*We look at both the mean (average) and median (middle) for pay gap reporting. The mean difference is the difference in average hourly pay; adding all pay rates together and dividing by the total number of people. The median difference is the difference in hourly pay between the middle paid (the person at the mid-point if you were to line all employees up from low to high pay) male employee and middle paid woman employee. The median is the most representative measure as it stops a small amount of very high or low salaries skewing the results.