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Making Flexible Work Campaign and Charter

The ABI's #MakingFlexibleWork aims to increase flexible working - in all its forms - and narrow the gender seniority gap in the Insurance and Long-Term Savings Sector.

The Making Flexible Work Charter: 

As part of this campaign, we are encouraging all ABI members, associate members and other insurance and long-term savings firms to pledge their support for a new sector specific Making Flexible Work Charter. It’s the first of its kind in UK Financial Services and 28 firms have already signed up, in addition to the ABI. It comprises the following three commitments, which need to be met within 12 months of signing the Charter: 

MakingitCLEARtransparent.pngCharter signatories commit to publishing details of their flexible working policy so that it is publicly available for employees and prospective candidates alike.
Making it possibleCharter signatories commit to advertising the majority of roles as being open to flexible working, including part-time working (if appropriate) and / or as a job-share if the role is full-time.
Making it happenCharter signatories put in place processes and guidance to support and promote different forms of flexible working, including job sharing.

Amanda BlancAmanda Blanc, Group CEO Aviva and HM Treasury’s Women in Finance Champion, said:

“There are still too many barriers which stop women progressing in insurance. As an industry we need to do more, and do it quicker, to make the changes we all want to see. Flexible ways of working is one way, but it needs to be available to everyone. The pandemic has shown us the value of flexible working, but to truly level the playing field at the office and at home, both men and women should feel able to work flexibly.”

Yvonne BraunYvonne Braun, Executive Sponsor for Diversity and Inclusion at the Association of British Insurers said:
“The insurance and long-term savings industry is no longer sitting on the fence about the benefits of flexible working for all staff. Today’s announcement represents one of the biggest ever commitments to increasing flexible working in financial services. By joining the Making Flexible Work campaign, firms will tackle the gender seniority gap and be able to attract and retain the brightest and best talent in our industry. 

“Our new research reveals steady improvement, but we need to accelerate the pace of progress in the sector. The data shows that while some firms have raced ahead, others have only just begun to make headway in improving diversity. The launch of today’s campaign and charter will ensure we go further and faster in making our sector more representative and help it win in the fierce battle for talent.” 

Labour Markets Minister, Paul Scully MP said: “Flexible working has significant benefits for a wide range of people and can bring numerous benefits to employers, like increased productivity and motivation.

“The Government has recently reconvened its Flexible Working Taskforce to provide advice as we work towards fulfilling our manifesto commitment to consult on making flexible working the default unless employers have a good reason not to.

“It’s great to see well-known firms recognising the positive impact of flexible working, and signing up to the Association of British Insurer’s innovative Making Flexible Work Charter.”

ABI members and associate members who are taking action and have signed up to the Making Flexible Work Charter:

Admiral Ageas Aioi Nissay Dowa Europe
Allianz Insurance Aviva AXA XL
BLM (associate member) BUPA Carpenters Group (associate member)
Covéa Insurance DAC Beachcroft (associate member) Direct Line Group
Ecclesiastical Insurance Esure Flood Re (partner member)
HDI Global SE LifeSearch Ltd (non-member) Lloyds Banking Group
LV= General Insurance Metlife Group Nest (associate member/partner)
Phoenix Group QBE UK Limited RGA UK Services Ltd
Royal London Group Sun Life Financial of Canada Wesleyan Assurance Society
Zurich Insurance    

 

Why do we need this campaign now 

Making Flexible Work

The Covid-19 pandemic has increased demand for flexible working, and research from the Government Equalities Office shows that 9 out of 10 job seekers want increased flexibility. The world of work is changing and it’s important that our sector responds to this. Many ABI members, and non-members, have already signed up to the new Making Flexible Work Charter and adapted their flexible working policies.  

Increasing flexible working, particularly job sharing, will help employers attract and retain the best and most diverse talent and over time it will reduce the gender seniority gap. It will benefit all employees and unlock career opportunities for disabled people. Evidence shows that organisations that are more diverse are more profitable and innovative and now is the time for businesses and employees to find the flexible working that works for them, for the benefit of everyone. 

Research shows that firms can secure double the number of applicants by advertising all jobs with ‘part-time, job share or flexible working options’ in the role title. Advertising roles as open to flexible working increases the number of women securing senior positions and increasing job sharing and other forms of flexible working will help reduce the gender seniority gap. 

The ABI has recently released new data showing that women now hold 29% of Board roles in our sector, up from 25% in 2019, and 24% of Executive level positions are also held by women. Women account for 58% of those in entry level positions and more needs to be done to retain and progress this talent. 

How can I find out more and sign my firm up? 

If you would like to find out more or sign the Making Flexible Work Charter then please email ABI Diversity and Inclusion Campaign Managers, Chloe Tait and Katy Murray – ChloeandKaty@abi.org.uk 

The Making Flexible Work Campaign forms part of the ABI’s 2021 Diversity and Inclusion Strategy. As well as this flexible working campaign, we will be working with members on improving Black, Asian and minority ethnic diversity and on increasing social mobility in our sector through promoting initiatives such as the Race at Work Charter and the Kickstart Scheme. You can read about all of our D&I work on our Diversity Hub.