Businesses might think they have a lot of time to prepare for the Massachusetts Pay Equity Act, scheduled to take effect on July 1st, 2018. What they underestimate is the time and resources it will take to properly analyze job titles, job responsibilities, salary/compensation levels and documenting their good faith effort to create an equitable workplace.
They actually need to begin NOW.
Let's start with an old TV show - The Mary Tyler Moore Show, to illustrate the problem:
Mary: "I would like to know why the last associate producer before me made $50 a week more than I do."
Lou Grant: "Oh, because he was a man."
The MA Pay Equity Act was written into law to correct a gaping disparity in compensation between men and women who are performing similar types of work and who have similar types of responsibilities.
Read more about the specifics of the MA Pay Equity Act
Here is a summary of the major components that will impact MA businesses, along with some Next Steps.
This will apply to all size employers in Massachusetts, with an effective date of July 1st, 2018
Work that is substantially similar in that it requires substantially similar skill, effort and responsibility and is performed under similar working conditions. A job title or job description alone shall not determine comparability.
Shall include the environmental and other similar circumstances customarily taken into consideration in setting salary or wages, including, but not limited to, reasonable shift differentials, and the physical surroundings and hazards encountered by employees performing a job.
The definition of “comparable work” under the new law is so vague that employers will have difficulty determining which jobs to compare for purposes of complying with the Act.
Under the new law, an employer is not liable if they can demonstrate that a pay difference for comparable work is based on one or more of the following factors:
You are prohibited from
Employers cannot prohibit employees’ discussion of their own wages or the wages of others. This was always the rule under the NLRA for non-management, but it now applies to everyone.
But Don’t Wait Until July 1, 2018
Contact MassPay to discuss job analysis, pay scales/compensation assessment & preparing your business for this new law (while you have time).