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What we expect

Real Living Wage

1 Real Living Wage – what we expect

What we expect

For organisations with 51+ employees:

  • Are you an accredited Living Wage Employer?
  • If not, will you commit to contacting the Living Wage Foundation within three months of receiving GBC accreditation and to agreeing a timescale with them to pay directly employed staff and regularly contracted staff the real living wage?

For organisations with less than 50 employees (streamlined version):

  • Do you pay your directly employed and regularly contracted staff the real living wage as defined by the Living Wage Foundation or have plans to work toward that goal?

Evidence base – why is the Real Living Wage component needed?

We require our small, accredited organisations to pay the RLW to all employees and regularly contracted staff.  (They may also like to accredit with the LWF.) 

We require our large, accredited members (50+ employees) to make contact with the LWF within the first 3 months of GBC accreditation. 

Set at the level recommended by the Living Wage Foundation, so our employees can achieve a decent standard of living and that we, as employers, can benefit from better retention and workforce engagement, with the savings that brings.

Living Wage Foundation

We encourage all large organisations to make direct contact with the LWF if you are (or as soon as you are) paying all staff the RLW.  The LWF will then help you put a plan together for any contracted staff, even if you are locked into long term contracts or have complex contracts.  They have the experience to help you through this process.  You can ask them to support you via their online form or we can put you in touch with them. 

This web page explains the process, includes FAQs, and provides the form for accreditation and queries: 

Become a Living Wage Employer | Living Wage Foundation 

FAQs | Living Wage Foundation  

To accredit with the LWF, organisations will need to:

  1. Pay the real living wage (RLW) to all directly employed staff 
  2. Have a plan to pay their contractors the RLW   
  3. Complete the application form online (or call the LWF on the number on their website for help with putting a plan in place)

An organisation can accredit with the LWF if they pay all directly employed staff the RLW.    

For contracted staff, a ‘phased implementation’ is possible if needed, ie a plan can be agreed between the organisation and the LWF that at the ‘earliest legal opportunity’ an organisation’s contracted staff will be uplifted to the RLW, or the organisation will need to change contractors to one who pays the RLW or another plan may be agreed where the situation is complex.  

Further information about dealing with 3rd party contractors and phased implementation from the LWF website: 

What is phased implementation? 

In order to be accredited an employer must pay all directly employed staff the Living Wage and have an agreed plan in place for third party contracted staff such as contracted catering, cleaning, security, parks or ground staff. Phased implementation means that the Living Wage is rolled out across third party contracts over time, as the contracts come up for renewal. These contracts are included in the licence agreement as ‘milestones’. The Foundation will check in with you periodically to ensure the milestones are on track. 

To see resources on how to commit to our components, see our Resource Library here:

Our 10 components

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