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Kathryn Roynon HR Consultancy has just completed a project to provide employers with new tools to create carer-friendly workplaces through the Working for Carers initiative.
 
Working for Carers helps employers across the South West and Midlands to create carer-friendly workplaces and is run by a partnership of carer support charities. Their membership accreditation demonstrates a positive and proactive approach to identifying and supporting employees who are caring for someone outside of work.
 

Working for Carers approached Kathryn Roynon HR & Training Consultancy in May 2017 to help them to review and develop a range of new resources to improve their offering to the business community. This included reviewing the latest industry research and best practice, and producing a range of accessible online guides for member organisations, including advice and model policies on supporting working carers.

Kathryn Roynon says: “I was already familiar with the Working for Carers scheme after having attended some of their regular networking events in Wiltshire, so was excited about the opportunity to work together to provide enhanced support for employers throughout the region, which in turn would enable working carers to balance their home and work lives more effectively.”

The new documents were launched in summer 2017 to coincide with the third anniversary of the Working for Carers scheme and are available to member organisations online.

Lizzie Rapley, Partnerships and Development Officer at Carer Support Wiltshire who commissioned the new resources, says: “The Working for Carers new employer guides provide employers with advice on the practical steps you can take to identify and support the carers in your workforce, helping to prevent crisis and keep your team at work.”

Kathryn Roynon comments: “With an ageing population, supporting working carers is going to become increasingly vital for employers who need to attract and retain talented staff. If you think it is not relevant to your business, think again! Caring can affect anyone – from the managing director, to the office apprentice. It is widely assumed that caring is a female issue, when in fact census data shows that 42% of carers are men.”

“A study by Oxford Economics found that, on average, it costs more than £30,000 to replace an employee – the vast majority of which comes from lost productivity while the new recruit gets up to speed. With nearly one in eight employees having caring responsibilities, it is vital that employers find ways of enabling these individuals to stay in work through flexible working and other approaches. The new resources I created for Working for Carers give employers a range of different practical solutions and highlight things to consider when supporting working carers which are often overlooked.”

The business benefits of getting this support right include:
• Improved staff retention
• Reduced absence
• Increased productivity
• Reduced recruitment costs
• Reduced stress
• Improved morale across the team
• Attraction of new talent
• Better reputation as an employer and as a business in general

Kathryn Roynon HR & Training Consultancy is proud to have supported Working for Carers with further developing this important initiative. Visit workingforcarers.co.uk for further information about their employer accreditation scheme.