Oakwood International Limited and Work-Life Balance

Employee Welfare in an Organization

Work-life balance has emerged as an important term in the modern industrial context. According to scholars, work-life balance involves a number of issues related to employee welfare at the workplace. This report analyses the state of employee welfare at Oakwood International limited. This is a UK firm that designs and delivers effective training, consultancy, and coaching in Human resource management and leadership for international companies in order to help them increase productivity, sustainability, and profitability. It serves a number of corporations in the Middle East, North Africa, Eastern Europe, and the UK.

Importance of work-life balance

Work-life balance provides a concept of supporting employees’ efforts to split their time and energy between social/family life and work. At the workplace, an effective work-life balance helps in reducing stress, which is associated with the employee experience. If an employee spends his or her time on work-related activities, he or she is likely to feel as if the family is being neglected. Thus, they are likely to feel unhappiness, resulting in work-related stress. This reduces performance and dedication at the workplace.

Legislation influences work-life balance. In the UK, a number of legislations have a profound impact on work-life balance. The UK policy and legislation that was developed after 1997 influences work-life balance. For instance, the national childcare strategy requires employers to ensure that employees have adequate time to care for their children, especially after birth and sickness. In addition, the legislations provide employees with parental leave and time-off for dependants.

Areas of legal support that may be given to an employee as a family member

At Oakwood, the company recognizes the fact that every person belongs to a family and needs to attend to some domestic tasks while at the same time performing at the workplace. Under the law (and in line with Oakwood policies) it is the right of every employee to get an annual leave of specified time. Secondly, maternity and paternity leaves are necessary, covering some days before and after the delivery of a newborn. For females, the leave is extensive enough to allow enough time for labor and lactation. For males, at least two weeks is given after delivery to allow them to attend to their partners, the newborn, and other dependants in the families. Thirdly, parents who adopt small children who need care are given adoption leave.

Therefore, there are four main areas of legal support that may be given to an employee as a family member in the UK. The changing needs of employees have an impact on their employment relationships. These areas include the basic understanding of their rights to maternity, adoption, paternity, parental, and dependant rights to work-off. In addition, these areas cover the rights to pregnancy and related illnesses, miscarriage, breastfeeding, and child adoption.

Reasons for treating employees fairly in relation to pay

First, evidence indicates that good pay is the major source of motivation for employees, given that all resources in the modern world are calculated in terms of monetary gains. Appropriate and reasonable pay ensures that employees feel appreciated for their work and efforts at the workplace. Secondly, compensation in terms of pay ensures that services are paid for based on their worthiness and value. Both the company and its employees will feel satisfied if the right pay is given to the right value of services rendered. Thirdly, employees with better pay are likely to improve their performance at the workplace, which increases the company’s productivity.

Discrimination legislation

At Oakwood, the UK labor laws have been considered in the company’s employment policies. The Rights Act of 2010 has extended human rights scope at the workplace by covering a number of areas in which employees might be discriminated against at the workplace (Lewis & Sargeant, 2007). First, it criminalizes any act of discrimination based on gender/sex. This means that a person cannot be denied an employment opportunity because of his or her gender.

Secondly, it protects against discrimination based on religion or belief. This means that regardless of religion, a person has the right to employment. Moreover, people with disabilities are expected to be considered equally in employment opportunities, provided their disabilities do not affect their performance. Finally, it is illegal to discriminate against former offenders when offering jobs.

Psychological contract and good practice

The mutual expectations of employers and their employees are an important aspect of developing good practice at Oakwood. The management at Oakwood expects the employees to be committed to values and goals, work hard, work as teams, employ and apply creativity and innovation. The employee expects the management to help them develop their skills, treat them fairly, and involve them in decision-making processes.

References

Lewis, D., & Sargeant, M. (2007). Essentials of employment law. London, UK: CIPD.

Megginson, D., & Clutterbuck, D. (2007). Continuing professional development. London, UK: CIPD.