Staff of a metropolis legislation agency have been advised they will completely do business from home – however provided that they take a 20 per cent pay minimize.
Stephenson Harwood employs greater than 1,100 individuals worldwide with places of work in London Paris, Greece, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea.
The agency confirmed to The Unbiased that it might supply these staff the choice of working from dwelling full-time for diminished pay.
Trade studies put the beginning wage for a newly-qualified lawyer working for Stephenson Harwood at £90,000, which means they’d stand to lose round £18,000.
A spokesman for the agency mentioned junior staff weren’t the goal of the coverage and only a few staff at any stage had been anticipated to take up the supply. He mentioned the corporate’s hybrid working scheme – as much as two days per week distant – was appropriate for many.
“For the overwhelming majority of our individuals – and the candidates we communicate to – our hybrid working coverage works effectively. Like so many corporations, we see worth in being within the workplace collectively recurrently, whereas additionally having the ability to supply our individuals flexibility,” he added.
The diminished pay scheme was geared toward those that have moved out of pricy cities corresponding to London to wherever they please, the agency mentioned.
“For resourcing causes throughout the pandemic, we recruited attorneys who weren’t primarily based in London, however lived elsewhere within the UK.
“The packages we provided had been completely different from what we provide our individuals in London. They’re totally distant and aren’t anticipated to recurrently attend the workplace. If they’re wanted within the workplace, we cowl their journey and lodging bills.”
Staff in London are sometimes paid what is understood a location premium, which means they get extra for a job than they’d elsewhere within the UK. Stephenson Harwood argues that staff transferring out of London may due to this fact work at a decrease price.
Whether or not the agency is alone in that is unclear. Final January, Revenue Knowledge Analysis requested 29 firms who paid location premiums whether or not they deliberate to alter the premium in mild of the pandemic.
Not one of the firms mentioned they did on the time however the scenario with dwelling working was troublesome to foretell then and stays so now.
Different legislation corporations have tried to entice staff again into the workplace with treats. The Occasions reported final week that one other London agency, Hogan Lovells, had paid for a litter of puppies to be introduced into its places of work for 2 days.
Continued dwelling working has been criticised by the prime minister, who questioned final week whether or not staff had been as productive whereas working from dwelling.
Residence working is widespread with staff although, in line with analysis from job listings web site Certainly. And the nationwide workforce has proved that it may be simpler with a lot of individuals working from dwelling, as productiveness was larger within the final quarter of 2021 than the pre-pandemic common.