Chris Oglesby, CEO at Bruntwood on how the Good Employment and real Living Wage is good for colleagues, business and communities.

In January 2020, Bruntwood were proud to become one of the first employers to sign up to Greater Manchester's "Good Employment Charter". And later that year, it was followed by our Real Living Wage status in November 2020.

Both accreditations are hugely significant for the business. Being a GEC founder member and a real living wage employer are just two ways in which Bruntwood brings to life our purpose, our values, our employer brand, and our inclusive culture in a very tangible and real way. They not only recognise the importance of our colleagues and the efforts we put into making Bruntwood a great place to work; but also in recognition of the social value we offer our local communities.

In a nutshell - the GEC and RLW are good for our colleagues, good for our business, and good for our communities.

With our purpose of “creating thriving cities” driving every decision we make, the community impact of being GEC and RLW accredited is huge. RLW affords our colleagues the flexibility, time, and financial freedom to concentrate on the things that matter to them. And as a business that looks to truly shape our colleagues’ worlds in line with the principles of the GEC, we were keen to get involved.

Both processes were simple from completing the initial enquiry or submission form demonstrating how we met the criteria, through to an assessment that confirmed we satisfied all of them. And even though both initial accreditations are complete, there is still more to do in ensuring we continue to meet those standards. Consistently measuring ourselves against the GEC’s seven principles, and matching the recommended salary increases will not only enable us to continue to foster and develop a brilliantly diverse working environment and inclusive culture - but will also hold us accountable for delivering for our teams.

Chris Oglesby, CEO, said: “We're really proud to be Real Living Wage accredited and to be one of the first members of the Good Employment Charter. Both go right to the heart of the Bruntwood Colleague Proposition. Bruntwood has always worked to the principle that our success is down to our colleagues. In return, we want them to be fairly rewarded for what they do, to learn and grow, to be able to take their career in new directions and to find a balance that works for them; this is exactly what the Charter and RLW sets out to achieve.

“Both recognise the work we have done to date and act as a catalyst to continue to improve what we do. Our business relies on the economy of GM prospering in a sustainable way over the long term. We believe both these initiatives are good for the economy and are foundations for a new type of more inclusive capitalism that is distinctively Mancunian and will power Manchester’s economy post pandemic. They provide an opportunity to really drive change and we’ve already seen the appetite it’s generated through the numbers and types of businesses looking to join the GEC or be accredited as a real living wage employer. We would strongly encourage all businesses to consider it.

“Their principles, and working to them will help transform and improve the working lives of people across all regions - unlocking their economic potential through their skills and talent. 500 of our group employees work in facilities management - many in jobs that the industry pays minimum wage. We are not satisfied with the Living Wage and are actively working to make these jobs more rewarding for both colleagues and the company alike.

“Bruntwood's purpose is all about 'creating thriving cities', and creating an inclusive workforce with fair people practices and opportunities for all is critical to a productive and thriving economy.

“Being members gives us the opportunity to demonstrate a solid commitment to our colleagues, to continuously strive for improvement in our culture and people practices, and to share knowledge and best practice with other companies who are committed to being good employers.”