Living Wage – the way forward for small companies
It has been a recent landmark victory for the Living Wage movement. The publicity surrounding George Osbourne’s annual budget brought to light the need for lower paid staff to be paid the Living Wage. This wage has been set to ensure staff are paid a fair amount and is enough to ensure staff can live free from poverty. Recent studies have shown that staff morale has increased and the quality of their work has been enhanced if paid the Living Wage. As you might expect absenteeism has also been seen to reduce.
OnTrack International recently became a Living Wage employer. We wanted to show that we are interested in paying our staff a fair salary for the position they undertake. We also regularly review and benchmark the roles our staff hold and we frequently re-evaluate our staff benefits package. This year alone we are increased our staff holiday allowance to include an extra days holiday for long term service and all members of staff receive their birthday off as part of their annual leave package. Upon implementing both of these schemes we found that it is sometimes the little things that can mean so much.
Small companies may often struggle to pay their staff a reasonable wage and some may even disapprove of the government demanding them to pay individuals more on an hourly basis. However with higher salaries staff will be more motivated and less likely to leave, thus in the long term the higher hourly rate will be worth the initial ‘pain’ of the implementation. There is also time to ensure that salaries will rise with the Living Wage not being fully implemented until 2020. At OnTrack we will use the yearly review to ensure our salaries remain above the Living Wage minimum.
As an employer we saluted this move by the government last week. We are proud to be part of the Living Wage movement at this time. The emphasis seems to be to help workers remain in suitable, fulfilling employment and we are glad to be able to offer this as part of the package of working at OnTrack.