Engineering a fairer future

Engineering a fairer future

CECA Scotland recently celebrated becoming an accredited Living Wage employer and our latest guest blog, from Rachel Morrison of Living Wage Scotland outlines the business benefits of securing accreditation.

Rachel Morrison, Accreditation Officer, Living Wage Scotland



Engineering a fairer future

Living Wage Scotland is hosted by The Poverty Alliance in partnership with the Living Wage Foundation and works with employers across Scotland who wish to become accredited as Living Wage employers.

Living Wage employer accreditation is designed to recognise and celebrate employers who go beyond their statutory obligations and pay their staff a wage that is calculated according to the real cost of living in the UK. The real Living Wage is currently calculated as £9 per hour for the UK and £10.55 for London.

While the civil engineering sector in Scotland is covered by the Construction Industry Joint Council (CIJC) agreement, meaning employees should already be receiving a living wage, there are still many concrete benefits for CECA Scotland members in becoming accredited Living Wage employers.

Firstly, becoming part of the movement of Living Wage accredited employers in Scotland allows your company to be celebrated and publicly listed as a real Living Wage employer. With ethical consumerism and ethical job-seeking on the rise, employers are increasingly recognising the benefits both in terms of recruitment and reputation in relation to being accredited as a Living Wage employer.

Secondly, there is a compelling business case for paying the real Living Wage.

A survey completed by The Living Wage Foundation of 800 employers who are accredited found the following benefits:
• 86% said it enhanced the organization’s reputation as an employer
• 64% said it differentiated the organization from others in the same industry
• 58% said it improved relations between staff and managers
• 57% said it increased commitment and motivation of employees in receipt of the real Living Wage
• 53% said it improved recruitment of employees into jobs covered by the real Living Wage

Thirdly, another benefit for Civil Engineering businesses can be in delivering an advantage in bidding for work with local authorities and public bodies. Currently 16 out of 32 Local Authorities in Scotland are accredited as Living Wage employers, with an aim to make this all 32. This means that, as you may have encountered already, Local Authorities are looking for Living Wage employer accreditation as part of their tendering process.

There are currently only 7 members of CECA Scotland who are Living Wage accredited, thus signing up to be part of the movement could help you to stand out in the tendering process with Local Authorities.

The fact that so few members of CECA and so few construction companies in general in Scotland are accredited means that there is a lot of room for progress in the industry and that’s why we were so pleased when CECA Scotland took the step recently of securing Living Wage accreditation.

CECA Scotland member Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd explained to us why they chose to become a Living Wage accredited employer, their HR Manager Stewart Hillier told us:

“Wills Bros have signed up as a Living Wage Employer because we want to be able to demonstrate that we are fully committed to ensuring that all our employees are paid at a level which allows them to have a quality of life beyond the constraints of the minimum wage”

Living Wage accreditation provides that extra level of proof that you are going further to highlight that you are a fair employer who considers their staff an important part of your business. Lending your support to the Living Wage employer movement in Scotland encourages others to consider doing the same.

Over the past four years, the Living Wage employer movement in Scotland has grown from just 20 Living Wage employers to over 1,300. This has meant pay increases to the real Living Wage for over 34,000 Scottish workers.

If this has sparked your interest and you wish to find out more about becoming a Living Wage accredited employer please get in touch with any questions you may have or read our Living Wage Employer Guide.

You can contact us by email at or give us a call on 0141353 0440.