Ladderstore MD Gail Hounslea sits at a desk in front of a keyboard and monitor - she has a light jacket, coloured scarf and blonde hair

Stakeholders feel happier doing business with us - Ladderstore

Established in 2004 by Managing Director, Gail Hounslea, Ladderstore is an SME based in Bolton which specialises in supplying safe working at height solutions for both business and personal use.

Gail Hounslea shares her experience of becoming a real Living Wage employer:

Q:  What does the real Living Wage campaign mean to you?

A: For me, it gives us reassurance knowing that we are paying our employees the real Living Wage which enables them to live well. This is all about social responsibility, and as an employer, it is our social responsibility to do the right thing for our people.

Q: How did your journey towards being a real Living Wage accredited employer begin?

A: I went to an event launched by the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, about the Good Employment Charter. He spoke about the vision of making Greater Manchester the first real Living Wage City-Region and linking back to our social responsibility as a company I really resonated with this vision. We therefore went ahead with the next stages to become accredited.

Q: What would you say have been the biggest benefits you’ve seen after becoming real Living Wage-accredited?

A: When you are a real Living Wage-accredited employer, your staff feel a lot happier and valued working for you. It is easier to build a strong workforce when they are happy in work and feel valued. We don’t have to worry about big staff churn either as we know that our staff are well looked after. In addition to this, our stakeholders such as our suppliers feel happier doing business with us due to this level of social responsibility and image we portray.

Q: What message do you have to other employers in your field who are not already real Living Wage-accredited?

A: To retain your team, making them feel valued and reassured in work, you need to pay them fairly, and the real Living Wage plays an important part in this. If an employee leaves and you need to recruit, the costs can be significant. For us it takes 6 months to recruit and train someone up to be effective in the role, so from a business perspective, to retain staff is far better than constantly churning due to low pay.