Housebuilder's median wage difference stretches from 9% to 9.8%

The gap between what women and men are paid at Persimmon, the country's biggest housebuilder by profit, has widened, new figures reveal.

The median difference in hourly wage at Persimmon has edged up from 9% to 9.8% in the past 12 months.

In its updated figures the housebuilder, which posted a pre-tax profit of £1.09bn earlier this week, also revealed that percentage of women in the top paid quarter of staff had shrunk. 


Source: Duncan Andison/

In the figures reported in 2018 women made up 18.5% of the top paid employees, but this figure had fallen to 15.6% in the most recent numbers. 

In a statement accompanying the figures Persimmon said: “The overall gender balance for the company remained constant compared to last year and we recognise that this imbalance in the number of men and women throughout the organisation is the primary cause of the gender pay gap.

“Inevitably people in more senior positions receive the highest rates of pay and the company has a tradition of promoting from within, which together with the fact that the construction industry has historically been more attractive to men than women, has led to the highest proportion of males in the company occurring in the upper quartile."

Persimmon is the latest construction firm to reveal a widening gender pay gap, with the first big contractors to report for a second time Interserve and Lendlease also seeing the difference increase slightly.

At Interserve’s construction arm, the median gap in hourly earnings increased from 29.7% to 32%, while it was a similar picture at Lendlease‘s construction business where the median hourly gap increased from 33% to 35.8%.

All firms published data reporting their position as of 5 April for both 2017 and 2018.

If an employer is listed has having 250 or more employees on 31 March they must publish a gender pay report by 30 March of the following year.