“Over the past 24 months as a nation, we have all encountered unprecedented challenges, from the uncertainty of the early days of the pandemic, to the economic repercussions of months of restrictions and protective measures. Despite these significant challenges, Lidl Ireland was pleased to continue our rapid expansion, announcing a €550 million local investment in our Irish operations, bringing our renowned high-quality products and market leading value to more Irish communities the length and breadth of the country.
Our continued growth is a testament to the ongoing dedication that each member of our more than 5,000 strong workforce in the Republic of Ireland brings to the business each day. We are incredibly proud of all we have achieved together, and we remain committed to investing in and rewarding our colleagues for their efforts. We have prioritised building not only an exceptional place to work, but also an inclusive and fulfilling culture at Lidl for our employees. From being recognised as a Top Employer by the Top Employers Institute for two consecutive years running in 2021 and 2022, to rolling out ground-breaking initiatives that have a true impact on our team, such as being the first Irish company to announce dedicated compassionate leave for all employees affected by early pregnancy loss and miscarriage.
Recognising hard work, rewarding success, and celebrating achievements have always been core to Lidl’s people strategy, so of course we were pleased to be in a position to further recognise the commitment and dedication demonstrated by our frontline and support teams in January 2022 by announcing a €10 million investment in pay increases for the Lidl workforce across the island of Ireland with all employees benefitting from an increase from March 1st, 2022. This increase is in addition to our commitment to paying the new Living Wage rate of €12.90 as recommended by the Living Wage Technical Group, the first nationwide retailer in Ireland to introduce this back in 2015.
Our pay structure is designed to be simple and transparent with pay increases based only on length of service and the role an individual holds.
I am proud to report that we currently have a 0% median pay gap between males and females in Lidl Ireland, both standing at €14.00 at present. We have also made significant progress in reducing our mean pay gap, the difference between the mean (average) hourly pay of men, and the mean (average) hourly pay of women we employ, which now stands at 6.2%, down from 8.84% in 2020 – a significant 30% decrease in just 12 months. As a comparison, in Ireland the average is 11.3% and at European level it is 14.1% according to Eurostat figures.
I am also pleased that the initiatives we have put in place are translating into meaningful and positive changes. However, we know that further progress is still required and as we look ahead to the future, we will continue to explore and invest in programmes that will help to close the outstanding gap.
The remaining gender pay gap is attributable to a greater proportion of males than females in senior roles in the business. Over the past year we have continued to invest in increasing the representation of female colleagues, across all levels in the business – from senior leadership to customer-facing roles through the development of industry-leading benefits, leadership development programmes and more. We recognise, however, that there is still more work to do to close the gap and it is our priority to continue to keep this in focus.”