Having brought its various businesses across the UK under the one brand a few years previously, aerospace and defence firm Leonardo realised it needed to unify its benefits offering to attract and retain talent. Andrew Letton, vice president for people shared services, at Leonardo UK, says: “It was very disjointed, and it had got to the point where we were actually competing with ourselves for our own people.”
Introducing a greater degree of flexibility around benefits was a priority. Having consulted with Aon, it decided to offer each employee £500, which could be spent during an annual enrolment window in November. This would be hosted through Aon’s benefits platform, which would bring together benefits from different providers.
The benefits offered by Leonardo include employee-funded private medical insurance, a salary sacrifice electric vehicle scheme, workplace individual savings account (Isas), the ability to buy and sell holiday, and access to discounted retail items. “We wanted to recognise that the workforce we have is multi-generational,” says Letton. “We’ve got people with 50 years of service but equally we recruit around 250 to 300 people annually in their early careers, as apprentices or graduates.
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“We’ve now got all 7,500 people on the same benefits platform, from manufacturing to very high-tech environments,” says Letton. “It’s been a catalyst to bring the whole UK together for that compensation and benefits piece.”
The initiative was recognised at the Employee Benefits Awards 2023, too, winning the Best Flexible Benefits Plan award.
The new system has been well received by employees, too. “The best feedback we get is from new joiners,” Letton adds. “We’re quite generous with our employee offering, and to put this on top is like the icing on the cake.”