In several countries, Google has been accused of underpaying thousands of temporary workers, and was caught in the eye of the storm The tech giant is accused of violating pay-parity laws in several countries. According to reports, Google delayed the correction of the pay rates for more than two years while it attempted to cover up the issue plaguing several of its offices around the world.
According to Google’s compliance department, underpayments had been discovered throughout the United Kingdom, Europe, and Asia in May 2019. However, its top officials choose not to compensate underpaid temporary workers fairly. It was decided to pay the new employees at corrected rates so that the boiling matter could be pressed immediately. According to a report by The Guardian, Google avoided legal, financial, and reputational damages by employing such practices.
The report cited access to internal Google documents and emails that brought the issue to the forefront. According to a New York Times report, Google’s Ireland-based manager Alan Barry was concerned that if the company dramatically increased the pay, the temporary workers would learn about the issue. This could have caused ‘a flurry of noise/frustration’.
‘It’s also not my intention to invite the charge that the problem has persisted for so long that the correction required is significant,’ Barry wrote in an email quoted in the NYT report. Google acknowledged the errors related to the underpayment of several temporary employees in its response to the Guardian. Tech giant Google has also promised an investigation into the matter.
‘Despite not increasing the benchmarks for some years, actual pay rates for temporary staff have increased numerous times in that time,’ said Spyro Karetsos, Google’s chief compliance officer. ‘Most temporary staff are paid significantly more than the comparator rates. However, it is clear that this process was not handled in a manner consistent with the high standards to which we hold ourselves. During this review, we’re committed to identifying and addressing any pay discrepancies that the team has not yet addressed,’ he added.