The BBC has reduced its gender pay gap – becoming the second British broadcaster to close the gap between what men and women earn.

The median gap has fallen from 9.3% to 7.6%, while its mean pay gap fell from 10.7% to 8.4%. The public broadcaster said this followed “concerted action” as it aims to close the gender pay gap by 2020.

It noted that the reduction was achieved through a series of initiatives addressing specific pay issues, introducing a simpler job framework and repositioning people within their pay ranges. It added that 7.1% of its median pay gap was driven by “structural issues” with too women in senior leadership roles and more women than men in the lowest quartile of the workforce, something that it is looking to address.

However, it said that women now make up a bigger proportion of the BBC’s leadership than ever before – 43.3% are held by women, up from 42.1% last year. The BBC wants to increase this to 50% by 2020.

This comes as Channel 4 revealed last week that it reduced its mean gender pay gap from 28.6% in 2017 to 22.7% in 2018 – a reduction of 21%. Its median pay gap has also fallen from 24.2% to 22.3%. In terms of bonuses, its mean gap fell from 47.6% to 39.4%, while its median gap fell from 28.7% to 25%.

Separately, the BBC published a review to look at the culture and progression for women in the BBC. The review, led by Donalda MacKinnon, Director of BBC Scotland, set out a range of recommendations drawn up after consultation with staff.  It identified issues such as increasing flexible working requests, help for those returning from maternity and the launch of a pan-BBC mentoring scheme for all staff to support women and men through their careers. It is also addressing its recruitment processes to create more opportunities for development and looking for mixed gender panels and shortlists where possible. Finally, it wants to increase training and support for managers, ensuring senior leaders act as role models to set the culture of the BBC.

Tony Hall, BBC Director-General, said, “The BBC must do everything it can to ensure that everyone working for it can fulfil their potential. Today’s report will help us to achieve that.

“Closing the gender pay gap is a priority for the BBC. We must lead the way. Today’s figures show we are making good progress, but we are not there yet and that is why we will keep pressing to deliver change.”