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Xerox (UK) Ltd. has been innovative in enabling its employees to achieve a balance in work-life management. Xerox is committed to helping employees balance the demands of their professional and private lives, in the belief that such a balance helps employees to be more motivated and productive at work.

Corporate profile

  • 4000 employees based in UK and Ireland
  • IT sector
  • Revenues from the Xerox European Operations $5.8 million

Key work-life balance initiatives

Xerox’s actions in this area have been taken as a result of feedback from employees. The first employee survey, carried out in 1991, together with subsequent employee feedback, highlighted the need for a variety of alternative work arrangements that empower employees to achieve a satisfactory work-life balance. Xerox’s response has included the following actions, which are available to staff at all levels:

  • Flexible working patterns – developed to match both individual needs and business needs, and not constrained by ‘fixed policy definitions’ (for example) jobsharing and flexible working hours
  • Location independent working – which enables employees to work from a variety of locations, including their homes
  • Enhanced maternity benefits
  • Enabling returnees from maternity leave to make either a phased return to work, or work on a part-time basis
  • Paternity leave with the first three days paid · Emergency dependent leave with the first five days paid
  • Career breaks ranging from one to three years · PrimeCare Adoption assistance which provides two months paid leave
  • Employee help-line for crisis and counselling support

Workforce profile

  • ·30% female, 70% male
  • 15% of the Directors team of Xerox (UK) Ltd. are women, 16% of Senior management, and 30% of Junior management
  • The salesforce, one of the largest employee groups, now comprises 31% women and provides a good entrance into a variety of management roles within the company

Business benefits

Xerox operates in the highly competitive and rapidly changing IT environment and must be able to attract and retain talented individuals. We must be able to release the creativity necessary to change for growth. As a direct result of innovative work-life balance policies Xerox has achieved the following benefits:

1. Built and retained workforce diversity

2. Strong leverage in the recruitment market (listed as one of the top ten UK employers in a recent publication)

3. Gained a better return on investment in employee development

4. Benefited from the commitment and loyalty of it’s employees

5. Improved productivity from retained knowledge and skills

Enhanced maternity benefits in Xerox (UK) Ltd., combined with a more flexible approach to working hours and location, have resulted in a £1 million saving over a five year period through increased employee retention.

There has also been a significant increase in the proportion of employees surveyed – 71% -who report that they are treated with fairness and respect: a 30% increase in satisfaction rate since the beginning of the survey.

People who have a say in how the work gets done have a greater sense of control over their lives.Workers with this sense of empowerment are more efficient, productive and motivated. Companies that treat employees with respect – as key members of the team – are repaid in the dividends of employee motivation, productivity and commitment.

Xerox recognises that the motivated, energetic problem-solvers needed to compete in today’s business world are not one-dimensional people whose only commitment is work. The very best employees are not the people who sacrifice everything else in their lives for the job. They are good, productive workers, but they are also parents, partners, community volunteers and leaders.

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