The gender pay gap reporting deadline is fast-approaching, and comms will play a critical role in communicating the data effectively and building a longer term strategy to avoid reputational damage to both corporate and employer brand.

      Join us at PRWeek’s fourth breakfast briefing for expert advice on getting your comms strategy right:

  • Explore the reporting procedure and learn how to communicate the data effectively
  • Hear from organisations on how they developed a response strategy through contingency planning
  • Gain practical advice on creating relevant, engaging and easy to understand content pieces
  • Learn how best to collaborate with HR, legal, insights and leadership teams in order to develop a cohesive strategy
  • Get top tips on how to develop a mid-long term communications strategy with core milestones

This event will be held under Chatham House rules.

Full venue address: Banksy room, No 2 Waterhouse Square, London, EC1N 2AE (Golin head office)

Tickets are £179 +VAT for PRWeek subscribers and £199 +VAT for non-subscribers


08:30 Registration
09:00 Chair’s opening remarks

Bibi Hilton, Managing Director, Golin and President, Women in PR

09:05 An update from the Government Equalities Office

Keynote presentation

Sara Abbonizio, GDP Business Engagement Lead, Government Equalities office

09:25 Virgin Media - 9% mean gender pay gap

Case study presentation

Virgin media were one of the first movers, publishing their pay gap back in September. The comms team created detailed yet clear content on their website for stakeholders to understand what the figures meant, and more importantly, what they were doing to narrow the gap. Tiffany and Adrian will provide a rare insight into the work going on behind the scenes at Virgin Media.

  • Getting your data right - practical advice on the reporting process
  • Building the story around the report - top tips for creating content that will make the figures easy to understand and build the story for your strategy moving forward
  • Contingency planning for both negative and positive response outcomes
  • Developing key milestones with your team - a look at Virgin Media’s 2025 vision.

Tiffany Watson, Head of Communications, Virgin Media
Adrian Porter, Director of Reward, Virgin Media

09:40 Wellcome Trust - 21% median gender pay gap

Case study presentation

On the 9 February, Wellcome Trust reported their 21% median gender pay gap. The Trust attributes its gender pay gap to the disproportionate balance of men and women at different levels of the organisation. Work is underway at Wellcome Trust to improve its diversity data collection in order to better inform new initiatives. Clare will discuss the work that the communications and HR departments are doing to understand the barriers to progression in the workplace, along with their longer-term recruitment and training strategy. Clare will explore the lessons learnt from this years reporting process, along with top tips on developing your mid-long term communications strategy.

Clare Ryan, Head of Communications, Wellcome Trust
Sarah Christie, Programme Manager - Diversity and Inclusion, Wellcome Trust

09:55 Challenges and opportunities ahead for NHS communicators - dealing with the gender pay gap in a complex workforce

Case study presentation

Rachel Royal, Director of Communications, NHS Digital

10:05 Collaboration and building a narrative with measurable results

Panel discussion and Q&A

Reporting the Gender Pay Gap is a positive step towards reinforcing equality, and will play a critical role in a businesses wider inclusion and transparency agenda. However, there will be many companies who have a larger pay gap that will be feeling nervous about the potential damage to brand and reputation. Building a clear communications strategy which is aligned to both HR policy and leaderships vision is critical in mitigating these risks. Speakers will discuss how they brought together multiple internal stakeholders to sing from the same hymn sheet, building a clear plan with key milestones and measuring your progress against these plans.

Tiffany Watson, Head of Communications, Virgin Media
Adrian Porter, Director of Rewards, Virgin Media
Clare Ryan, Head of Media Relations, Wellcome Trust
Rachel Royal, Director of Communications, NHS Digital
Sarah Christie, Programme Manager - Diversity and Inclusion, Wellcome Trust
Bibi Hilton, Managing Director, Golin and President, Women in PR (Moderator)

10:40 Chair's closing remarks
10:45 Close of event


Bibi Hilton, Managing Director, Golin

Bibi is an expert in Gender Pay Gap communications and a passionate advocate for gender equality and workplace transformation – such as the introduction of flexible working practices – to help reduce the gender pay gap. She advises clients on how to effectively communicate their gender pay gap and has spoken widely on the topic in the media and at events. As a result of this work, Golin has become the Fawcett Society’s official partner for GPG communications. In her role as Golin MD, Bibi has introduced enhanced family policies, flexible working and a returnship programme.

Adrian Porter, Director of Awards, Virgin Media

I am currently the Reward Director for Virgin Media - a company with 13,500 employees spread across 150 UK locations. My team and I are responsible for all aspects of compensation, benefits, pensions, recognition, wellness and performance management at Virgin Media. I have worked in financial services, manufacturing, telecoms and pharmaceuticals. I started my career in accountancy until I saw the light and jumped across to work in HR twelve years ago.As a father of two 9 girls I am passionate about equality, inclusion and closing the gender pay gap so that my daughters can do whatever makes them happy at any level in any organisation.

Tiffany Watson, Head of Communications, Virgin Media

Tiffany is a communications professional with a track record of transforming business goals into communications strategies, which create awareness and drive action. A leader, who develops others and has an innovative, creative approach to building engagement and advocacy. A Northerner at heart who’s straight-talking, no-nonsense approach gets results. Before settling in communications, Tiffany had roles in Marketing and Media. She held a number of communications roles at Barclaycard, including heading up Internal Communications for Europe and South Africa, Head of Strategy and Content and Head of Internal Communications. She recently joined Virgin Media as Head of Internal Communications.

Clare Ryan, Head of Communications, Wellcome Trust

Clare is Head of Media Relations at the Wellcome Trust, the world’s second highest-spending charitable foundation, where she leads a team of press officers and social media specialists who build and sustain Wellcome’s reputation. The team work on promoting a very wide range of activity, from basic scientific research, to Wellcome’s policy work, to new exhibitions at the foundation’s museum, Wellcome Collection. Clare joined Wellcome from UCL, where she helped world-leading academics talk about their research to national and international media. Before UCL, she held similar roles at the University of Leeds and CERN.

Sarah Christie, Programme Manager of Diversity and Inclusion, Wellcome Trust

Sarah Christie is D&I Programme Manager at the Wellcome Trust, where she is responsible for working with colleagues across the organisation to make Wellcome a more diverse and inclusive employer – which includes reducing Wellcome’s gender pay gap. D&I is a strategic priority for Wellcome, and Sarah works in a team which is also focussed on harnessing Wellcome’s influence to make UK science more inclusive, and engaging a wide range of people with science and health. Previously, Sarah worked at Cancer Research UK and Chatham House.

Rachel Royal, Director of Communications, NHS Digital

Rachel Royall is an experienced Board level communications and engagement director. Graduating from Kings College London, Rachel has an MA in Public Communication, a Diploma in Strategic Communication and is a member of the CIPR and the IoIC. Previously, Rachel was the Director of Communications and Marketing at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Sara Abbonizio, GDP Business Engagement Lead, Government Equalities office

Sara Abbonizio is Head of Business Engagement on the Gender Pay Gap, working to support businesses to comply with Gender Pay Gap Information Regulations and take action to close any gaps. She has specialised in equality policy for over 15 years. Prior to working on gender pay gap policy she has advised on religion, belief and race discrimination legislation (including women bishops), enforcement issues for the Single Equality Bill (Equality Act 2010), strategic work on tackling violence against women (with a focus on domestic violence and trafficking), gender equality public sector agreements and EU and international gender equality policy.

Tickets are £179 +VAT for PRWeek subscribers and £199 +VAT for non-subscribers

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Please note that the agenda is subject to change.