Mike Wade discusses the benefits of signing up to the Living Wage Foundation

Hodgson Sayers has been accredited by the Living Wage Foundation for nearly three years and the experience has been wholly positive.

It has also coincided with a truly astonishing period in the history of the business.

We are a construction company with traditional skills that has grown significantly and has gone on to win a plethora of national awards. The most recent accolade is our listing in the Financial Times 1000 Fastest Growing Companies in Europe.

We like to think there is a link between our accreditation and our success. First and foremost, we are a people business. While the senior team are in the privileged position of taking the business forward, the lifeblood of the company is our people.

We are also very much part of the local community. Nearly all our staff live close by, they went to school locally and many of them have stayed here to raise families.

Embracing the Living Wage Foundation was a very important milestone for us. The senior team carefully examined the case for accreditation and it all made great sense. There were the obvious business benefits such as that well paid staff are motivated and more productive. Retention of staff significantly reduces training and recruitment advertising costs. Long term employees create strong teams.

They were important factors, but uppermost in our minds was the fact that embracing the Living Wage Foundation was simply the right thing to do. It chimed perfectly with our core values that guide all our transactions – honesty, decency and integrity. We don’t want people coming to work and worrying about money and if they have enough to get them through the week. The wellbeing of our staff is as important to us as it is to them, we have a responsibility – a duty of care.

Furthermore, with issues such as Brexit and austerity policies there is now much greater uncertainty than at any time in the last 20 years. This makes all of us, as individuals, uneasy and less confident in the future. For that reason we at Hodgson Sayers want to support, develop and encourage our people – and that includes ensuring that those at the bottom of the ladder are not left behind financially.

We also know that the money we pay our staff will mainly be spent within the local community supporting shops, cafes, leisure outlets, garages, restaurants etc. We see this as a real benefit of accreditation as it is a certain fact that people who feel comfortably off are willing spenders while those who feel under pressure financially tend to save. The impact of the latter on the local economy could be very serious.

So, for us at Hodgson Sayers we believe that content staff help build great companies and positive communities and that links perfectly with our core values.