Gender Equality Certification in Italy
In January 2022, Italy created a new gender equality certification program. This certification was designed to encourage employers to more fully integrate gender equality into the way they do business. It offers direct benefits including tax exemptions, and it’s also a way for companies to be publicly recognized for creating a more equitable workplace.
It’s no surprise, then, that many companies operating in Italy are very interested in certification. To help employers learn more and figure out if they want to apply, PayAnalytics has written a short e-book about Italy’s gender equality certification. This e-book is available for free to anyone who signs up for our mailing list. Click here to download your copy.
Changes to the Equal Opportunities Code in Italy
The gender equality certification was established as part of broader changes to Italy’s Equal Opportunities Code. Architects of these changes were motivated to improve the indicators of gender equality in Italy. In 2020, the EU Gender Equality Index showed that Italy was 4.4 points below average, ranking 14th out of all EU nations. In fact, the European Committee of Social Rights (ECSR) warned that Italy would need to do better to ensure equal pay and equal opportunities for all employees.
The Equal Opportunities Code was then amended with the changes that took effect in 2022. While it had previously required organizations with 100 or more employees to report gender and pay data every two years, it now requires this information from organizations with over 50 employees. Under the amended code, employers also need to provide information about what they are doing to reduce the gender pay gap.
Benefits of gender equality certification
Within the changes to Italy’s Equal Opportunities Code, the gender equality certification was created to incentivize companies to prioritize gender equality, with the ultimate goal of improving opportunity equality in Italy. Private companies that become certified will receive two types of incentives.
First, there is a tax exemption. This exemption equals 1% of the regularly assessed amount of social security tax (with a maximum limit of 50,000 euros per year). Second, certified companies will be given an “award score.” This award score will give them a leg up when they bid on public contracts or apply for regional, national, or EU-wide funding.
Gender equity certification requirements in Italy
Any size organization and any type, private or public, can seek certification. Companies are scored on their performance in six areas of evaluation. These areas of evaluation are culture and strategy, governance, HR processes, opportunities for growth and inclusion of women in the company, gender pay equity, and protection of parenthood and work-life balance. In turn, each area of evaluation includes between three and seven key performance indicators, or KPIs.
Organizations are scored on each KPI and awarded points up to a total maximum. The system is weighted, so some KPIs are more influential than others. Likewise, some areas of evaluation are more influential than others. For example, HR processes count for 10% of the total score, while gender pay equity counts for 20%. This system is simplified somewhat for organizations with fewer than 50 employees. Our e-book takes a more in-depth look at the areas of evaluation and KPIs.
In a global workplace where employees are increasingly wanting to work for companies that value diversity, equity, and inclusion, certification programs provide public recognition of a company’s efforts. Companies that have already been on a pay equity journey for a while may find this recognition valuable. And for those that are just getting started, pursuing certification may help with setting clear and meaningful goals.
To learn more about the benefits and requirements of gender equality certification in Italy, don’t forget to check out our e-book. Our software solution helps you meet certification requirements, start preparing for the EU Pay Transparency Directive.
Drop us a line to set off on your pay equity journey.
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