Tools and methods

Employers are responsible for ensuring equal pay. Pay discrimination must first be recognised before it can be eliminated. How can companies identify pay discrimination and successfully prevent it?

Scientific job evaluation 

A scientific job evaluation defines the requirements and demands of a function. The resulting value of work attributed to each function provides a basis for determining the pay for a function. The typically female occupation of nurse, for example, is at first glance very different to the typically male occupation of police officer. However, if the requirements and demands for each job are assessed, then both jobs have comparable work values. For this reason, in a pay system they must be on the same pay grade and receive the same pay.

One of the dangers when using job evaluation is that the process followed is not gender-neutral or not applied in a gender-neutral way.

In the case of pay claims, a scientific job evaluation is often an important means of presenting the comparison of two activities or functions in court to determine if the work is equal and if equal pay is being respected. The Swiss Federal Supreme Court has admitted analytical job evaluation in such cases.

Statistical pay analyses (regression analyses) 

Statististical pay analyses (regression analyses) are based on the economic theory of human capital. This is based on the premise that individual knowledge and experience have a significant impact on pay. Statistical processes (multiple regression analyses), establish exactly how several pay-related factors together are interrelated with pay or influence the size of pay. It can thus be ascertained whether under otherwise equal conditions relating to pay-relevant factors a connection exists between pay and sex. Factors relevant to pay are, for example:

  • Objective qualification characteristics, also known as human capital. These include education, professional experience or years of service.
  • Factors relating to the job or function. These include professional status and the level of requirements and skills of the job.

The Swiss Federal Supreme Court has allowed regression analysis to be used in pay discrimination claims. The Confederation has developed a self-test tool based on regression analysis. It is called Logib and is available free of charge on the FOGE website.

Further information