Centrica – Winner 2019, Best for Carers and Eldercare
3 Key Points
- 10 days paid carers leave plus an additional 10 if matched with annual leave.
- ‘Carers declaration’ to help the company better understand its staff and ensure support remains even if line managers change.
- Reduction in staff absence because carers are better supported.
“When both my parents became ill, my manager was extremely proactive in helping me to get time off as planned carers leave and in reacting to emergency situations. This reduced stress levels for me at work and at home. The employee network group has been one of the most positive aids too. It is one of the unsung heroes of my organisation. I honestly think that without all this support, I may well have had to pack in my job.”
Andrew Goodhall, Customer Liaison Manager
Carers leave of 10 paid days, as well as an additional 10 paid days if employees match each additional day with annual leave helps staff deal with planned and emergency caring situations. While a formal ‘carers declaration’ with HR means the company is better understanding its workforce and support remains even if line managers change.
Carers leave is available to employees from their first day of employment, as is flexible working, which can also help staff balance work and caring responsibilities.
More than a thousand employees have made a formal ‘carers declaration’ within Centrica’s HR system. This helps the company to understand more about the growing number of carers and their specific support needs across different locations. It also helps conversations between employees and line managers, and means that if line managers change, support remains in place.
A well-established Carers Network provides information and advice to carers. The group encourages all parts of the business to take part in external awareness days, such as Carers Rights Day. It also creates a sense of community in the workplace for employees who are carers and they offer insight and feedback to HR on relevant policies and campaigns.
Centrica continues to highlight carers internally by sharing personal stories of employees at all levels of the company who have caring responsibilities. Internal campaigns have resulted in more employees asking about the carers network and policies.
Centrica’s goal is to help one million carers stay in, or return to, work by 2030 by continuing to improve support for carers as well as encouraging the wider business community to support working carers. The company also works with the charity, Carers UK, and aims to influence government policy so that statutory carers leave is achieved.
The company’s support for carers has saved an estimated £1.8 million by reducing absence and time when employees are at work but are not well or are not performing well.