Colorado HR

      Equal Pay for Equal Work.

Pay Equity Problem

Pay equity has been a topic of formal study and casual discussion for decades and continues to gain momentum. After all, many workers are still separated into jobs that are historically underpaid because of the gender and race of those occupying those positions. In addition, 2018 data from a Korn Ferry pay database of 1.2 million employees in 800 U.S. companies indicate a pay gap of 23.4% between the average male worker’s salary to the average female worker’s salary.

Law - Colorado Equal Pay for Equal Work Act

To resolve pay inequities, many states have begun to closely examine their laws in an effort to close the gender pay gap. In Colorado, SB 19-085 is one such example. Signed into law in May 2019 and taking effect on January 1, 2021, Colorado has become the tenth state in the country to pass an equal pay law that is more demanding than federal law. One of its provisions make Colorado employers liable for damages when it has paid an employee of one sex a wage less than that paid to an employee of a different sex for similar work.

New Notice Requirements Unique to Colorado

  • The Equal Pay for Equal Work Act creates two new notice requirements for Colorado employers, which are not found in any other state equal pay law:
  • Employers must make reasonable efforts to announce, post, or make known all opportunities for promotion to all current employees on the same calendar day.
  • Employers must disclose in each posting for each job opening the hourly or salary compensation, or a range of the hourly or salary compensation, and a general description of all benefits and other compensation offered.
  • Key Provisions for Establishing Pay Discrimination
  • The new law protects against discrimination because of sex (including gender identity) or sex in combination with another protected status. Employers may not pay an employee of one sex less than an employee of another sex for substantially similar work (measured as a composite of skill, effort, and responsibility).

Pay Equity Audit Process

Establish Baseline

Examine records to determine whether potential disparate impact exists.

Data Analysis

CPS HR will provide comprehensive statistical analysis to gain further insights into potential pay gaps.

Close the Gap

CPS HR will use selected objective criteria to determine a compliant pay rate for each employee.

Independent Audit

Keep in compliance with periodic audits to establish proactive oraganizational evaluations.

How CPS HR helps public agencies comply with SB19-085

Conducting a pay audit is the first step in showing an agency’s good faith in identifying if pay inequity exists. CPS HR has a proven toolkit to help public sector organizations diagnose their pay practices and shows how to address it in the short- and long-term. Annual independent audits after the inaugural study help you ensure continued application of your fair pay practices.

Remember, actions taken to address pay equity aren’t only about compliance, but also about building a culture of trust and fairness within an organization. Be ready to do your part to bring equity into the workforce and protect your organization from liability.


Deanna Heyn
Deanna Heyn

Please contact me directly to discuss your organization's specific needs.

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