Our next wave of updated HR policies are now available – all focused around our ways of working here and bringing our Ways of Being Co-op to life. These bring together what have previously been separate policies across Group and Insurance. We’ve also re-written them in our new tone of voice so that they’re easier to follow for all colleagues.

These can all be found on the colleague site in the ‘People Policies‘ or ‘Our ways of working here‘ sections on the colleague site. This is available from any device, any time.

The new policies are:

  • Probationary Period Policy
    Now a single probationary policy for all colleagues, though the probationary period continues to vary across business units. It includes a stage by stage process for managers to follow. The ‘absence trigger’ of two absence periods during probation is now extended for all colleagues.
  • Travel and Expenses Policy
    We’re showing we care by allowing colleagues to claim for breakfast/dinner if they leave home earlier (>90mins)/get home later (after 8pm) than normal for work purposes (but not staying overnight). We’ve also changed the conditions where flights are allowed if it’s cheaper than a train/hotel combo.
  • Whistleblowing Policy
    We’ve increased the range of people who colleagues can raise concerns too.
  • Study Support Policy
    This replaces the Educational and Vocational Qualifications Policy and gives all the details to help colleagues who want to study whilst working (whether for the benefit of the Co-op or not). Also gives managers some templates for approval or decline letters.
  • Working with Relatives Policy
    A relative is now defined as someone directly related to a colleague, as well as those they’re related to via marriage or step-relations. The guidance here applies to not just colleagues with relatives in the Co-op, but also those in agency, contractor, supplier and consultant roles who may be working with us.
  • Essential User Car Policy
    No real changes to this beyond just making it easier to follow. But for those who have a company car, they can now choose to use their own car while waiting for a company one to become available – but can only claim mileage at the Co-op car rate.
  • Grade-Related Car Policy
    As with the above, the same change added about being able to use their own car while waiting for a company one to become available.
  • Travel Allowance Policy
    No change to content.
  • Dress Code for Support Centres
    This just makes it the same across all our support centres – allowing colleagues to be themselves and trusting them to wear what they feel is appropriate for their role and activities each day.
  • Colleague References Policy
    Now includes notes on references written on social media sites (e.g. LinkedIn) as being a personal opinion and not one of the Co-op and how the ‘reason for leaving’ is now removed from Insurance colleague references.

If you need to know more…

If you have any questions please get in touch with ER Services on 0330 606 1001.

We’re well on the way to harmonising all our HR policies by the end of 2017 – that’s around 60 in total. Watch out for more new releases during the year.

Gary Dewin
Director of Pensions, Reward, Benefits and Employee Relations