At the start of the pandemic when employees were required to work from home AXA UK awarded all staff a weekly allowance of £6 per week to help with increased utility bills, broadband costs etc. With the impact of the pandemic reduced and the majority of employees switching to a hybrid working contract AXA stopped paying this allowance in June last year.
Since then fuel prices (which drive electricity and heating prices) have increased by 12% in October 2021, 54% in April this year and will increase by a further 27% (and that after Government intervention) next month. Employees on hybrid contracts have endured and continue to face increasing costs to work from home that AXA does not help with.
Whilst employees are having now to pay to work at home with increased electricity usage and heating, AXA UK has been making big savings on its property portfolio, combining office locations (like Gloucester and Teesside) or reducing floor occupation (as in the likes of Birmingham, Bristol and Ipswich). Desk availability is now around 2/3 of the employee population, we cannot all work in the office at the same time. The vast majority of employees are now required to partly work from home and pay for the electricity needed to power their equipment to do their job, and heat the rooms they are working in.
When you work in the office you are not asked to chip in for the electricity to power your PC or light the office, nor are you asked to contribute towards the cost of keeping the office heated. Why should you have to do this just because you are working in a different location that also happens to be your home?
AXA does pay a home working allowance to a much smaller population to “cover domestic costs like additional utility bills”; those employees designated “non-office based workers”. Whilst some of these do not work near an AXA office, and rarely if ever visit one, a considerable number of them visit AXA offices as regularly as some on hybrid worker contracts.
This inconsistency, along with the cost hybrid workers are facing to work from home (when AXA is making savings from employees doing this) is why we are calling on AXA to re-instate the working from home allowance for hybrid workers, or provide some pro-rata allowance to cover the days employees now work at home rather than the office.
They are reluctant to do this which is why we are asking you, the employees, to sign this petition, and encourage your colleagues to do so to, so management understand the strength of feeling on this issue and re-consider their stance in asking employees to pay to work form home, whilst they make big savings in reduced property costs across the UK.
TO SIGN THE PETITION CLICK HERE
Least they can do. I have friends who have to work from home too (like I do) and they get allowances of £50-£100.
Petition signed. Nothing will change though.
Very cold today. I am struggling to not use the heating. Sat with a throw over me on work calls.
Furthermore, I’ve charged my computer, and my work phone, and filled the kettle and drank hot drinks – all from home today, and if I’d been in the office the cost would have all been AXA’s.
I haven’t qualified for a cost of living payment, yet cannot afford to use the central heating.
It’s going to be a tough winter if we don’t get some help.
I save FAR more by having the opportunity to work from home than if I chose to travel into the office.
If AXA asked for a commitment to attend the office more frequently, it would really affect my finances and I would have to consider looking for a job either closer to home, or with fully remote working.
The £6 per week being asked for is a drop in the ocean in comparison to travel / smart clothing / lunch costs that I would incur if I didn’t work from home as much, let alone the 2 hours a day I am saving by not commuting – I value my time!
The Union would be better off focusing on negotiating the most recent salary increases for the lowest earners to be replicated across all, not just those who were earning under £11/hr.
Not every is making these savings. AXA does not have the capacity to require people to attend the office more frequently that at present. This is not the only thing we are focusing on.
The savings I make working from home the majority of the week, far out way £6 WFH allowance. I use the savings to supplement any increased heating costs I incur at home.
Where I work, there isn’t currently any office capacity issues and people still prefer to benefit from hybrid working.
AXA have made a one off £1000 payment to those earning £30k and under, which I feel is a generous amount which benefitted a large group of people. This was very much appreciated by those recipients who I have spoken to, and will help to balance budgets over the next few months.
We shouldn’t forget the investment and speed at which the company sourced and rolled out laptops in March 2020. In addition to extra emergency leave, and thank you days.
I would rather the Union focus on the next round of pay negotiations, which will have a bigger, longer lasting impact for their members and AXA employees.
You have to remember though that not everyone is in the same situation as yourself. You might have the luxury of being able to save enough to cover extra costs but not everyone can. Plus I doubt £6 would cover it all these days anyway.
It’s definitely good that some money was offered to people to help with increased costs, but it’s not like you suddenly don’t have money issues when you earn over £33,000. Currently those earning over that have had no help at all.
I agree that pay negotiations should be a focus, but from what I’ve read I’m sure they will be along with everything else they’re working towards.