We reported ourselves to equality consultants

By Meri-Tuuli Olkkonen, People Operations Lead Dec 13, 2019 • Read time 2 min

Last spring, Wunderdog’s equality and non-discrimination plan was updated along with our salary statistics, which generated an internal conversation about salaries.

People were curious to know more about why there is a difference in salaries. We thought that this topic was important and started to dig into it more thoroughly, quickly reaching the conclusion that the best solution was to have an impartial outsider undertake a salary audit for us and help revise our non-discrimination plan.

People were curious to know more about why there is a difference in salaries.

People Operations took ownership of this task and contacted Tasa-arvo.fi to ask if they could assist us in this matter. The personnel at the Tasa-arvo.fi seemed puzzled; why would a company contact them rather than an individual? Unfortunately, Tasa-arvo.fi can only help individuals and couldn’t assist us, but they did congratulate us on taking action on the issue as a company.

Next, we contacted the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Once again, the reply was confused. Why is a company, especially a private one, contacting them on such a matter? After a short discussion, it became clear that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was also unable to help companies with this matter – although they too were thrilled about us making the effort.

Tasa-arvo.fi and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration both suggested that we contact the World of Management (WoM), who might be able to help. WoM is one of only a handful of equality consultancies in Finland and is staffed with top-notch equality professionals. Their customers are mainly companies within the public sector; they rarely get contacted by private companies.

So, we made yet another phone call. WoM, like the organizations before them, were baffled. Nevertheless, they agreed to help us, even though they had never carried out this kind of salary audit before.

The goal of the audit was to ensure that our equality plan was written according to legislation and that there are no unacceptable salary differences between colleagues.

The goal of the salary audit was to ensure that our equality plan was written according to legislation and that there are no unacceptable salary differences between colleagues

Results

  • The content of the equality plan was found to be accurate and valid.

  • Current salary levels are acceptable when considering the nature of Wunderdog’s business.

  • Differences between salaries were in line with equality law and Wunderdog’s salary rationale.

Recommendations

  • Wunderdog could create a more extensive model for determining an individual’s skill and competence levels. For example, the breadth and depth of skills, as well as how they reflect on colleagues and Wunderdog as a company, could be described with statements.

  • Wunderdog could develop a system for collecting feedback to ensure enough data is available to fairly assess the performance of employees.

  • Wunderdog should continue to follow the equality plan and update it continuously as well as discuss the salary audit results with personnel.

The audit was carried out by equality consultant Sinikka Mustakallio and equality specialist Inkeri Tanhua from WoM Oy. Meri-Tuuli Olkkonen and Ville Komulainen from Wunderdog also worked on the project.