13 August 2015 | Herpreet Grewal
FM has a duty to show the wider world how zero-hours contracts, used scrupulously and sensitively, can be ethical, according to a BIFM report.
Published this month, the report, Mind the Pay Gap: The Living Wage And Zero Hours, comprehensively brings together the points discussed at a BIFM leaders' forum (16 July 2015) about the topic.
The speakers include: Guy Stallard, head of facilities at KPMG; Nikki Singh-Barmi, operations manager at GRITIT; Caroline Reilly, programme manager at the Living Wage Foundation; and Andrew Hulbert, managing director of Pareto FM.
The report says some of the key findings when it comes to Living Wage and zero-hours contracts led to an acknowledgement that FM must emphasise that client engagement and productivity tend to be higher at companies paying the Living Wage.
There was also a need for greater understanding that better pay reduces staff churn, which in turn leads to more cohesive working.
Clients must also be alerted to the reputational risk of ignoring the Living Wage, says the report.
The industry must press the government to properly resource existing mechanisms - ensuring enforcement of the National Minimum Wage and boosting the work of the Low Pay Commission.
It should also lobby the government to consider raising the National Insurance threshold as well as creating stronger supervisory and management performance.