1 June 2022 Company News

SMS commits to ‘Living Hours’ accreditation

Team holding "we are a living hours employer"
Amidst the current cost-of-living crisis, we have pledged to become a ‘Living Hours Employer’, guaranteeing relevant SMS employees the stability of hours to meet their everyday needs.

We are delighted to announce that SMS plc is now an accredited Living Hours Employer. This means that all relevant employees are entitled to: A contract that reflects the hours you regularly work A guaranteed minimum of 16 hours of work per week Decent notice periods for shifts, of at least 4 Weeks.

Our commitment to Living Hours builds upon our existing Real Living Wage accreditation, to provide our employees with stability of hours to meet their everyday needs. The standard has been developed to ensure that people have the predictable working patterns and income to better plan their lives.

We are one of the first employers to implement this new standard and become an Accredited Living Hours Employer. You can find other organisations who provide their employees with Living Hours here: www.livingwage.org.uk/living-hours.

We are working with our Procurement Department to support our external providers, to ensure that employees working on our contracts such our cleaners, will receive Living Hours contracts as well. This latest set of measures aimed at supporting our communities and employees through the cost-of-living crisis follows our commitment earlier this year to become a signatory of the Purpose Coalition’s ‘Purpose Goals’, a collective of private and public sector organisations aiming to making positive impacts on society through support of the UK Government’s levelling up agenda.

Judy Keir, Chief People Officer at SMS, said: 

Becoming a Living Hours employer reinforces our commitment as a business to put our people first, ensuring that all relevant employees are provided with stability through a guaranteed number of work hours per week, alongside other measures. With the current cost-of-living crisis sadly impacting communities and households across the UK, this latest pledge builds on our existing commitments as a Living Wage employer, guaranteeing our people fair pay for the brilliant work that they do.”

Katherine Chapman, Director, Living Wage Foundation, added:

We’re delighted that SMS has joined the movement of responsible employers across the UK who voluntarily commit to provide their workers with Living Hours – secure, guaranteed hours and notice of shift patterns – alongside the real Living Wage. “SMS join a growing list of businesses, including Aviva and SSE, committing to Living Hours. They, like SMS, recognise that jobs with decent pay and secure hours are essential to support workers through the current cost of living crisis.”

More about Living Hours

Living Hours is a new standard that has been developed by the Living Wage Foundation. The Living Wage movement has benefited hundreds of thousands of families by enabling them to earn a wage they can live on. You can hear some of their stories here. You can find out more about Living Hours by visiting www.livingwage.org.uk/living-hours.