At a glance: reward and benefits headlines this week 18-24 May 2018


Your quick-read round up of the reward and benefits stories appearing in the press in the past seven days.

The headlines you might have missed between 18-24 May.

At a glance: reward and benefits headlines this week 18-24 May 2018

42% feel managers can spot if they are struggling with poor mental health
Employee Benefits: Under half (42%) of respondents feel that their manager would be able to spot any signs that they may be struggling with poor mental health, according to research by Mind. Read story

Ambition gives UK staff an extra hour off for Mental Health Awareness Week
Employee Benefits: Global professional services recruitment organisation Ambition has given its 40 UK-based employees an additional hour off work this week, in order to help staff focus on their mental wellbeing. Read story

Government committee publishes report on support for working carers
Employee Benefits: The Work and Pensions Committee has this week published a report detailing recommendations on how working carers can be better supported by both employers and the government. This includes proposals to make the right to request flexible working available from an employee’s first day. Read story

Steve Webb: Let people pay transfer advice costs from DB pension rights
Money Marketing: Offsetting the cost of advice this way would benefit clients and advisers alike. Read story

Upper Tribunal rules in favour of TPR in ITV Box Clever case
Professional Pensions: The Pensions Regulator (TPR) was right to use its powers to seek financial support from ITV for members of the Box Clever pension scheme, the Upper Tribunal has said. Read story

Gender pay gap rules will trigger more equal pay claims
HR Magazine: Equal pay claims are rarely about workers doing the same jobs. But there are many other situations in which claims are being brought. Read story

National Work from Home Day highlights desire for flexible working
HR Grapevine: Today's National Work from Home Day has re-emphasised the state of flux in which British working patterns are currently in. Read story

ONS: Improving anxiety levels stagnating
Cover: Average life satisfaction score for UK is 7.69 - up 02.2 since Jan-Dec 2016 - however the improving rate of anxiety levels, which improved year-on-year between 2011 and 2015, has stagnated, the latest ‘Personal wellbeing in the UK' report from Office of National Statistics (ONS) has revealed. Read story 

Shareholder discontent grows over executive pay
Personnel Today: This year’s annual general meeting season has been marked by several significant rebellions by shareholders over senior employees’ pay and bonuses, with AstraZeneca being the latest to see a revolt. Read story

Industry calls on government to hold off IR35 extension until public sector impact is clear
People Management: Treasury and HMRC announce joint consultation into off-payroll working in private sector. Read story

Beware low pay complacency, warns think tank
HR Magazine: Low-paid workers still face challenges despite National Living Wage increases, according to the Resolution Foundation. Read story

South Africa to award pay increases of up to 7.7% to public sector staff
Employee Benefits: Public sector employees in South Africa are to receive a pay increase of up to 7.7%, following the conclusion of wage negotiations between trade unions and the government at the end of last week. Read story

Sainsbury’s amends pay proposal for 130,000 store employees
Employee Benefits: Retail organisation Sainsbury’s has amended its pay proposal to increase base rates of pay for 130,000 store employees as a result of feedback from its staff consultation process. Read story

28% value additional holiday and flexible working over a pay rise
Employee Benefits: More than a quarter (28%) of respondents value additional holiday days, sabbaticals and flexible working hours as employee benefits, over receiving a pay rise, according to research by SmallBusinessPrices.co.uk. Read story

UK has a 31% pension gender gap
Employee Benefits: The UK has a 31% pension gender gap, with an average female pension pot of £16,083 compared to the average male pension savings of £23,416, according to research by PensionBee. Read story

Back to black: FTSE 100 schemes post accounting surplus for first time in decade
Professional Pensions: Pension schemes at the UK's 100 largest listed companies had a combined accounting surplus of £4bn at the end of 2017, Lane Clark & Peacock (LCP) analysis suggests. Read story

First female chair of ACA elected
Corporate Adviser: The Association of Consulting Actuaries (ACA) has elected Jenny Condron FFA as its new Chair – the body’s first female chair, succeeding LCP senior partner Bob Scott from June 1st. Read story 

Government shelves ‘grandparental leave’ reforms
People Management: Experts welcome breathing space as policy put on hold until after review of shared parental leave. Read story

Prime minister calls on employers to do more to support ageing workforce
People Management: May also urges businesses to help those with caring responsibilities. Read story

Report pinpoints how to accelerate flexible working and gender diversity
Personnel Today: A report published today sets out to “speed up culture change” act as a blueprint for change and ensuring that the gender diversity agenda leads to real change in UK workplaces. Read story

Could universal basic income ever take off in the UK?
Personnel Today: Universal basic income has been described as everything between a utopian ideal and “dangerous nonsense”, but with a trial due to take place soon with local authorities in Scotland, how likely is it that it could become a reality in the UK? Jo Faragher investigates. Read story

LGPS assets grew 21% in 2017 as scheme enjoyed 20% returns
Professional Pensions: The Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) had a markedly improved year in 2017 as high returns helped increase assets to £263bn as of March 2017. Read story

Doubts over rate rise this year as inflation hits fresh one-year low
Professional Pensions: UK consumer price inflation fell 0.1 percentage points in April to 2.4%, a fresh one-year low and missing economists' expectations of inflation remaining at 2.5%. Read story

Tricuro awards two-year pay deal to 1,500 employees
Employee Benefits: Council-owned social care organisation Tricuro has awarded its 1,500 Dorset-based employees a two-year pay deal, which includes annual pay increases of 2% and the introduction of a new national pay band. Read story 

53% are not comfortable discussing family-related matters with their employer
Employee Benefits: Over half (53%) of respondents would not feel confident discussing family-related issues with their employer, according to research by Working Families and Bright Horizons. Read story

Flexible working stunts women's career progression
HR Magazine: Many flexible workers feel their career progression has been limited as a result of their working patterns, according to research. Read story

FTSE 100 schemes in surplus, but experts warn that risks remain
Pensions Expert: FTSE 100 pension schemes have reflected a year-end accounting surplus for the first time since the financial crash, according to consultancy LCP, but experts say trustees and sponsors should continue to be prudent in case of potential future market downturns. Read story

Flexible working policies alone not enough to support parents
People Management: Flexible working policies alone are not sufficient to support parents who are looking for a better work-life balance, a report published today has discovered. Read story

Man ordered to pay £67k after stealing employee's parental leave money
HR Grapevine: SBS News reports that Kulpreet Singh, from Marrangaroo in Australia, was the Manager of a United Petroleum roadhouse (service station). Read story

Employers offering financial education to tackle stress
Health Insurance Daily: More UK employers are tackling employee financial stress by offering financial education as part of their wellbeing programmes, research suggests. Read story

Steve Webb: Does The Pensions Regulator deserve the criticism it's getting?
Professional Pensions: The regulator has come under significant criticism in the wake of the Carillion affair. Sir Steve Webb asks if the flak it is getting is fair? Read story

Steve Bee: Employers tied in knots by red tape on pensions
Money Marketing: Many of my friends are ex-teachers, having retired from the profession. We were recently talking about how valuable the teachers’ pension scheme has been to them in building a decent amount to retire on and bemoaning the fact the next generations are unlikely to have such benefits provided through the generosity of their employers. Read story

Pensions minister faces call for universal pension scheme
Money Marketing: Pensions minister Guy Opperman has said auto-enrolment and the increased state pension could help minimise the future costs of workplace pension schemes. Read story

Dame Morrissey: Gender equality at work in a "halfway house”
HR Magazine: Organisations must move beyond issues surrounding mothers to address their cultures, according to Helena Morrissey. Read story

Supporting employees’ personal life goals key to retaining their loyalty
Incentive and Motivation: Employees who feel personally supported by their organisation are more likely to stay with their employer. Research released today by Thomsons Online Benefits reveals that employees who feel that their benefits scheme has a positive impact on their lives, are over 40% more likely to classify themselves as loyal towards their employer. Read story

HR professionals overwhelmed by stress at least once a month, says People Management survey
People Management: Work often has a negative effect on health, but HR is optimistic on automation and embraces flexible working. Read story 

Shocking number of Brits FAIL to take full holiday entitlement
HR Grapevine: Two in five (40%) UK employees took just half their annual leave entitlement during the last holiday year, according to figures from Glassdoor. Read story

Median pay awards at 2.5% for fourth consecutive quarter
Personnel Today: The median basic pay award remained at 2.5% for the fourth consecutive rolling quarter at the end of April, analysis by XpertHR has found. Read story

Uber to give drivers medical cover, sick pay and other benefits
Personnel Today: Uber is to introduce numerous protections for its drivers through a new insurance scheme, including sick pay and maternity and paternity payments. Read story

Keeping NGOs safe
Cover: Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) work internationally in dangerous and impoverished countries. How can employers ensure their staff's healthcare needs are covered? Read story

John Lewis Partnership launches housing rental benefit for 85,500 staff
Employee Benefits: Retail organisation John Lewis Partnership has launched a property rental benefit for its 85,500 John Lewis and Waitrose employees, in order to support staff financial wellbeing. Read story

47% believe they have a good selection of employee benefits
Employee Benefits: Under half (47%) of respondents believe they have a good selection of employee benefits to choose from, according to research by Thomsons Online Benefits. Read story 

Eleanor Tomlinson paid less than male co-star for previous series of Poldark
Employee Benefits: English actress Eleanor Tomlinson joins the conversation around Hollywood’s gender pay gap, as an interview with Red magazine reveals that the 26-year-old hopes to be paid the same as male co-star Aidan Turner, after it was found that she was paid less than him for past series of the hit BBC drama Poldark. Read story



Read the next article

Topic Categories


Related Articles



Sponsored Articles



Editor's Picks

Looking beyond pay and career progression to boost retention


Join our community

 

Sign up for REBA Professional Membership and join our community

Professional Membership benefits include receiving the REBA regular email alert, gaining access to free research and free opportunities to attend specialist conferences.

Professional Membership is currently complimentary for qualifying reward and benefits practitioners. 

Join REBA today