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In April 2017, the UK Government introduced new gender pay gap (GPG) transparency regulations, which are designed to encourage large employers to take informed action to close their GPG where one exists. These regulations required almost 11,000 UK employers across the private, public and social sectors to report their GPG data.

Our firm is meritocratic, so men and women with the same performance and experience in equivalent roles are paid equally.

But we do have a gender pay gap because we have a larger number of men in the higher paid senior roles. This year, our mean (average) hourly gap is 25.1%.* Our mean bonus gap is 67.4%.* In compiling our figures, we have included all of our UK partners.

We are committed to building a strong pipeline of female talent and are achieving gender parity in recruitment. In the last year 49% of generalist consultants joining the firm in the UK were female. In addition, our new Global Managing Partner, Kevin Sneader, has personally stressed his commitment to taking the necessary steps to achieving gender parity.

Greater gender parity is a real priority for the firm and for society more broadly. For more than 15 years, our research has made the business case for greater gender diversity in the workplace, including our recent Delivering through Diversity report which showed that having more women in executive positions boosts a company's bottom line.

*These figures have been amended to reflect the results of an external review process we commissioned to ensure McKinsey & Company is consistent with best practice regarding Gender Pay Gap reporting.

So what are we doing to promote gender parity?

1. Making parity a priority

We are making progress when it comes to female representation at all levels. We have committed to reaching a target of 40% female consultants, including 30% female partners and 15% female senior partners by 2020.

2. Parity in recruiting

We run a number of programmes and initiatives to attract talented female applicants, including our Women as Future Leaders network, unconscious-bias training for all interviewers, and ensuring female colleagues are visible at all stages of the recruitment process. We hope that the parity we are achieving in our recruitment will lead to greater parity at senior levels over the next few years, as we promote more women.

3. Exciting, developing, and retaining talented women

The real question is, having recruited fantastic women, how do we retain them so that they advance to the most senior levels? How do we ensure that our female consultants can picture themselves having successful, balanced, long-term careers at the firm?

We are doing this in a number of ways. We have introduced targeted programmes for future leaders like our Women's Leadership Workshop and our Pathway to Partner programme. Open discussions about barriers and trade-offs are part of the solution and we connect high-performing men and women, inside and outside the firm, to discuss the issues that really matter to them. We are committed to creating an inclusive culture and developing agile working practices that help all our colleagues achieve their full potential and build the skills and capabilities they need to succeed.

We are far from having all the answers—or delivering the full results we aspire to—but our understanding of what’s holding back progress, and of how to accelerate it, is growing. Our gender pay gap numbers are a timely reminder that we still have some way to go, but we are encouraged by the progress we have already made and by the desire we have to get this right.

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