Barclays, Centrica and Financial Ombudsman Service recognised as family-friendly employers


Banking organisation Barclays (pictured), energy business Centrica and the Financial Ombudsman Service are among the employers recognised at the Working Families Best Practice Awards 2019.

Now in their 10th year, the Working Families Best Practice Awards, organised by work-life balance charity Working Families, recognises employers across 12 different categories, celebrating organisations that are leading the way in creating flexible and family-friendly workplaces.

Barclays won the accolade of Best for mothers, in recognition of its enhanced maternity pay, available from an employee’s first day, its support for those undergoing fertility treatment and its parenting portal. Commercial property organisation Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield took the award Best for fathers; the business provides four weeks of fully paid paternity leave and enhanced shared parental pay, with three months at full pay and three months at half pay. This was taken up by 31% of eligible employees in 2018.

Other winning organisations include Centrica in the Best for carers and eldercare category, and MHA Larking Gowen, which won the award for Best flexible working initiative.

A new category for this year’s event was Best for mental health and wellbeing, which was won by the Financial Ombudsman Service. The organisation was recognised for its use of mental health first aiders and ‘boosting resilience’ sessions.

The awards ceremony was held on 20 June 2019 at Vintners’ Hall, London.

The full list of winners is:

  • Best for mothers: Barclays.
  • Best for fathers: Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield. Commended: Deloitte.
  • Best for carers and eldercare: Centrica.
  • Best flexible working initiative: MHA Larking Gowen.
  • Best for embedded flexibility: Morgan Sindall Construction and Infrastructure. Commended: Deloitte.
  • Best for flexible recruitment: Arnold Clark.
  • Best small private sector employer: Response IT.
  • Best for line manager support: Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield.
  • Best innovation: Waltham Forest Council.
  • Best returner programme: Morgan Sindall Construction and Infrastructure.
  • Best family network: Royal Bank of Scotland.
  • Best for mental health and wellbeing: Financial Ombudsman Service.

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Jane van Zyl, chief executive officer at Working Families, said: “Our research shows that while 86% of parents in the UK want to work flexibly, less than half actually do. To close this gap, we need employers to step up, to innovate and to create policies, practices and cultures that work for people and work for the business.

“[These] winners are doing just that: taking creative approaches to embedding flexibility, building supportive cultures and listening to and learning from their employees.”