Making Space brings forward pay increases for frontline staff

Rachel Peacock, CEO, Making Space

Making Space is the latest care provider to pay all employees the voluntary real living (RLW) wage.

As recommended by the Living Wage Foundation, £9.90 per hour will be paid from April, and the rise will see full-time support workers earn an additional £1,700 each year. It will also pay the new UK statutory national living wage (£9.50 per hour) from January (last month), three months ahead of schedule.

It is investing just under £500,000 to bring in the pay increases, which will benefit all frontline care and support workers.

Employees on pay points already equal to or above £9.90 per hour will see their annual income grow, with 85% of all Making Space workers receiving a rise of between 3.9% and 9.2% by April.

Rachel Peacock, chief executive of Making Space, which provides care and support to adults with mental health, learning disabilities and dementia, said: ‘The efforts of everyone at Making Space continue to be nothing short of incredible, particularly for those teams on the front line where the experience of the pandemic has been relentless.

‘Bringing forward the pay increase helps us to reward those incredible efforts and show the value that we place upon our frontline roles.’

The latest rise in the RLW was announced in November, and several providers have decided to pay the voluntary wage. However, a 1.25% increase in national insurance contributions for workers and employers comes into force from April.

Making Space, which provides supported living, extra care, as well community-based and specialised services, operates across England, with most provision in the North and a growing presence in the Midlands.

In January last year, Making Space launched Wagestream, a financial wellbeing initiative to help workers draw on up to 30% of their salary as they earn it, track their pay in real time and help manage money. It has also increased business mileage rates to 40p a mile, from 35p.

Its annual report for the year ended 31 March 2021, showed a 1.1% uplift in total income to £27.6m, up from £27m in 2020. Expenditure also grew slightly to £26.6m (2020: £26.5m). Net income reached £969,353, up from £507,787, while EBITDA rose to £1.2m, from £854,706.

‘Income growth was curtailed in the year due to the delay in building-related developments due to the pandemic,’ its annual report said. ‘Tendering opportunities also reduced during the pandemic. The operating surplus held up due to the financial support offered by central government, local authorities and NHS funders. which paid for the increasing costs associated with delivering services while mitigating Covid-19 risks.’