Telecoms firm calls in real living wage

Managing director Paul Baxter, left, with staff at Corptel which is a living wage employer
Managing director Paul Baxter, left, with staff at Corptel which is a living wage employer

A Leigh telecoms business has spoken of its pride at being a living wage employer and ensuring staff get a fair day’s pay for their work.

Corptel, based at Leigh Business Park, spoke about giving employees the real living wage as shocking figures showed more than one in three workers in the area do not get enough money to live on.

The most recent data from the Living Wage Foundation showed that 34.4 per cent of the workforce in the Leigh parliamentary constituency, around 9,000 people, were being paid below the real living wage, currently £8.75 an hour outside London.

Corptel’s managing director Paul Baxter said: “The owner of the business has always believed in a fair salary and in fact we were already paying the living wage before we heard about the campaign around it.

“Our salaries are unusual in this industry, especially for warehousing and salesperson roles, but we feel we get the best people and want to reward them.

“We have great staff retention in what is traditionally thought of as a high-turnover sector.

“The business owner and myself are both from humble backgrounds and grew up on council estates and I remember growing up the main arguments between my parents were about money.

“We know how it is, we have been salespeople and built our way up without going to university or anything like that.

“We understand where people are coming from and believe in giving them a chance and then watching them prosper.”

The Leigh figures for low pay revealed by the Living Wage Foundation are considerably higher than the North West average of 23.8 per cent of the workforce receiving insufficient salaries to cover the cost of living.

The real living wage is calculated by economists using the cost of a basket of goods and services.

The Living Wage Foundation also celebrates on its website people paying the real living wage, highlighting employers in Leigh, Atherton and Tyldesley giving staff enough to live on.

Local living wage employers include Leigh’s Oxfam shop and the YMCA.