The Age Friendly Team Award: DWP

Winner of the Business in the Community’s Age Friendly Team Award 2019

DWP: A range of age-friendly practices as civil service aims to be most inclusive employer

  • 25 per cent of DWP staff work part-time or flexibly
  • 5 days paid leave can be immediately requested

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is proud of the multi-generational make-up of its teams. Some employees are expecting to be grandparents soon, while others are supporting children through their exams, or hoping to buy their first home. These are stories that are actively encouraged in the workplace, whether over team lunches or via the social intranet page. 

This enables the organisation to have career conversations, provide flexible working arrangements where necessary and offer financial planning or occupational health support more easily. 

“An excellent role model of a team who explained what they do and how it works in a very grounded way, and who are clearly living and breathing an inclusive approach.”

Laurence Beckett, People Partner Savings & Retirement, UK Insurance, Aviva 

 Such initiatives are part of the UK Civil Service target to be the most inclusive employer by 2020. As one of the largest government departments with 83,000 staff, the DWP is leading the charge in being an age-friendly place to work. 

The Carers Passport, for example, allows those with care responsibilities to request flexible work patterns, have access to periods of paid (up to five days can be immediately requested) and unpaid leave to attend to unforeseen emergencies. 

Meanwhile, 25 per cent of the DWP’s team work part-time or make use of flexible working patterns to accommodate care or health requirements. 

The organisation has also piloted mid-life ‘MOT’ conversations to help staff plan their futures in work and made sure that recruitment activity encourages age-friendly strategies. Recently, an older member of staff applied for, and was successful in gaining, promotion to a Civil Service Fast Stream programme to which applicants are usually younger graduates. 

Information in this impact story has been supplied by DWP.

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