SimplyFixIt becomes first living wage employer in its field

SimplyFixIt becomes first living wage employer in its field

Tech and computer repair specialist, SimplyFixIt, is the first company of its kind in the UK to be accredited as a Living Wage employer. Regional manager Scott Wilkinson spoke to BQ about why paying staff the living wage is essential and what it means for employee loyalty.

Describe your business in no more than 100 words

SimplyFixIt has grown in the past 20 years from one shop and three staff to eight across Scotland and we’re optimistic about reaching even further in the coming years.

First and foremost we’re a tech repair company having moved on from PC retail in the early days, but we also sell a range of hardware and accessories. We deal with a mix of platforms on Microsoft and Apple devices and take on the jobs that some of the bigger stores won’t touch in an effort to up sales.

 

How many staff do you employ?

We’re a team of 28 at the moment, but as we grow our staff numbers will, of course, grow with us.

We started with three in the first shop so I think it’s fair to say we’re optimistic about taking on a few more before the decade is out.

 

What are pay conditions usually like for workers in your sectorindustry?

It varies, there are some companies, like us, ensuring all staff get a fair wage, but there are others who aren’t. Some of the big boys, like Apple and PC World, aren’t able to boast that and we’d like to see that change.

 

How long have you been paying the living wage in your business?

We were given the accreditation in February this year, becoming Scotland’s first tech repair company to do so.

 

What impact did the change to living wage have on you?

We’ve seen staff satisfaction soar. Having spoken to staff in all of the stores I have seen the positive impact it has had and that has been incredibly warming to see.

 

And how do your staffprospective staff react to it?

It’s been quite a short time, but we certainly haven’t had an exodus of staff since the accreditation!

 

How would you react to someone who says – “but surely if you’re paying more salaries, you’re making less money?”

Our business performance speaks for itself. We pay our staff a fair wage because it’s the right thing to do. It also improves staff morale knowing they won’t have to struggle with bills and this is reflected in the standard of their work and service.

 

And, of course, that’s conducive to success in any endeavour.

Do you do any form of measurement on employee engagement – like a staff survey, for example? If so has the living wage impacted on this?

We don’t take any formal measurement on engagement but working in the shops every day the impact on staff has been clear to see.

 

Where do you see your company in five years time?

I think I see SimplyFixIt still providing the top quality service and assurance that we do now.

What I think will change is the number of stores doing this across Scotland and who knows what devices our staff will be working next decade.

 

What advice would you give to employers wondering if they should pay the living wage?

To do it!

You can’t ignore your staff when you’re building a successful business so paying them fairly is essential. I can say from experience that your staff will thank you for it with loyalty and hard work.

 

If you’d like to find out more about Living Wage accreditation, and discover whether it might be right for your organisation, please visit http:scottishlivingwage.orgjoin

 

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