Match Group's CEO Audited the Company's Payroll to Make Sure She Was Paying Women Equally and Was Surprised at the Results
- When Mandy Ginsberg took over as CEO of Match Group she vowed to make sure the company was welcoming to women.
- She knew she had to audit the company's payrolls to make sure that women were paid equally to men.
- She hired an outside auditor and was so shocked when they told her that Match was paying women 100% equally that she made the auditor double check the results.
- She now credits one of her long-held leadership practices on how to deal with employee pay.
When Mandy Ginsberg took over as CEO of online dating juggernaut Match Group in mid-2017, she was determined to alter the perception of the industry as a "bro culture" world.
And one step she made was to audit the salaries of her own workforce, which is now 1,500 people, to see if she was paying women and men equally for equal work.
She was shocked to discover that at her company — the largest operator of dating apps with brands like Tinder, Match, Plenty of Fish and dozens of others — her female employees were 100% equally paid, according to the findings by a third-party auditor.
Paying people equally for the work that they do, regardless of their gender, has been required by law since the Equal Pay Act was passed in 1963. And yet women still earn 80 cents for every $1 that men earn, and are often underpaid even for equal work.
Ginsberg didn't just want to give lip service to her internal audit. She hired outside auditor, Syndio, to examine the pay rates of her workforce which is 36% female. The firm didn't just look at job title but grouped employees by what their jobs entailed. If it found a difference in pay between genders, it looked at other non-gender factors such as tenure, education, years of experience to determine if that explained the gap.
And often, it doesn't. Salesforce famously audited its workforce, not just once but twice over the past couple of years and issued $6 million in raises to women and agreed to publicly discuss its process, becoming the poster child for equal pay. The second audit and adjustment was done after Salesforce grew its employee base substantially through acquisitions, CEO Marc Benioff previously told Business Insider.
Match has also grown dramatically through acquisitions. So, when the consultants told Ginsberg that their analysis had found no discrepancy, Ginsberg was so surprised she demanded the third-party auditor go back and check the data again. They did and the results stood.
It was a light-bulb moment for Ginsberg. Although she's only been in the top CEO role for a year and a half, she spent the last half dozen years as the executive in charge of a number of Match's biggest businesses, including Match.com, Match Affinity, Plenty of Fish, OKCupid.
And one of her "guiding principals" has been to offer pay and raises based on people's value to their company "whether they ask for it or not," she said in the press release.
In other words, she hasn't turned compensation into a negotiating game, granting raises only when someone asks. She has simply paid people what the company was willing to pay them and rewarded them without asking for a job well done. And now, she's not only published the results but is speaking out and advocating for this method.
"So often and in so many businesses, women don't make compensation demands. And until we raise our daughters to make those demands, we, as leaders, need to be proactive and methodical about how we think about compensation," she said.