‘Good work’ for all: celebrating Living Wage Week

By Olga Jadinskaja, Project Manager of the CIPD's Living Wage pilot.

CIPD is joining the annual celebration of the Living Wage movement in the UK. It works with employers to drive positive change in their workplaces, so more employees receive fair pay, resulting in higher productivity, job satisfaction and increased social mobility.

This week marks the announcement of the new Living Wage rates. Every year the Living Wage Foundation reviews the current rates to ensure the real Living Wage is always reflective of the country’s current economy. You can find the new rates here.

The real Living Wage is important because it impacts employee financial well-being and bigger issues like social mobility. We need to take action to address this and HR has a key role to play in ensuring that employers can reap the benefits of fair pay - higher engagement, creativity and productivity.

Given the current economic and political outlook, employers might not see the benefits of paying the real Living Wage because of the associated employment costs. However, becoming an accredited Living Wage employer will not only increase employee wellbeing but will also encourage employers to adopt smarter job design and skills utilisation.

Last year we partnered with the Living Wage Foundation to run a pilot involving nine senior leaders or ‘champions’ across diverse industries – to undertake activities promoting the real Living Wage. The pilot was extremely well received, winning the Living Wage Innovation award and leading to three organisations gaining accreditation

“Our Living Wage Champions are leading the way in placing dignity and respect at the heart of their organisations, by working with CIPD and the Living Wage Foundation they have made a real difference to the lives of workers and have shown that HR professionals who are at the heart of their organisations drive change and can go above and beyond to promote the real Living Wage” Amy Hulme, Senior Programme Manager, Living Wage Foundation.

This encouraged champions not only to review their internal HR policies and pay structures and improve employee financial well-being, but also get involved in other campaigning and volunteering initiatives.

“Becoming a Living Wage employer is about much more than just paying higher wages. What our pilot has shown is that if we support HR professionals, they can become real change agents in their organisations. The Living Wage becomes a catalyst for driving positive change in a number of areas related to the Good Work agenda. This is a win-win for everyone: employees who have more meaningful jobs, employers who increase their organisation’s productivity and UK society at large as this supports other big agendas, such as social mobility and skills utilisation” says Katerina Rudiger, Head of Member, Branch and Community Engagement at CIPD.

We believe HR professionals are in a unique position to drive and make this positive change and through developing their skills, take steps towards a better world of work.

For more information on how you could use your HR skills to support people, communities or business, please visit this page.

More information about the Real Living Wage and the accreditation process can be found here.

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