Nationwide aids staff with formal call-up scheme

Nationwide Building Society is prepared for a possible escalation in the war
against terrorism after introducing a formal Army reservist policy.

By coincidence the company had introduced the policy two weeks before last
month’s terrorist attacks in New York and Washington but Andrew Powles,
employee relations manager at Nationwide, said it could now prove vital.

The policy, which was formulated in the aftermath of the Kosovo crisis,
guarantees staff full pay, with basic pay provided by the MoD and topped up by
the company, for the maximum six months they can serve.

Employees’ jobs are also kept open for the same period and they will receive
help adapting back to the working environment, including counselling if needed.

Nationwide has also doubled the number of fully paid days staff can take off
to attend reservist training from five days to 10. Powles believes reservist
employees can bring valuable skills to the organisation.

"While away either on training or duty they will develop skills that
they can bring back into the workplace including confidence, integrity,
persistence, planning, prioritising and energy," he said.

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