Will you ensure your suppliers are paid a living wage?

7 November 2012

Alison Smith, the Purchasing CoachThis week is living wage week, where organisations in the UK are being asked to sign up to paying a

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wage that enables those in receipt of it to meet the basic costs of living. In London, that figure is £8.55 and outside London £7.45 (£1.26 more than the current minimum wage). Having seen first hand the difficulty a friend has had working at the minimum wage, I can’t understand how we can set a minimum wage at less than a living wage. But putting personal thoughts aside, I’m interested whether we, as a profession, are getting behind this, turning a blind eye? I believe we should be considering:
  • Do we as a profession think it’s something we should be endorsing?
  • Many public sector bodies have advertised they will pay the living wage, but have they included their supplier base?
  • The same can be said for the private sector. Does anybody work for a public sector organisation that has a commitment to paying a living wage?
  • Will the principle partners for the living wage (Aviva, Save the Children, KPMG, Trust for London, Linklaters, Resolution Foundation and Queen Mary University of London) be including their supplier base in payment of a living wage?
  • For those organisations with corporate social responsibility policies, how many have included reference to paying a living wage here at home?
I’d love to know your thoughts. It could be an area in which the profession could make a significant impact.
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