Fair Work: action plan

This document sets out the strategic approach the Scottish Government is taking to help achieve the 2025 vision for Fair Work.

8. Delivering A Refreshed Scottish Business Pledge

The Scottish Business Pledge provides a means of bringing together the main themes identified in Scotland's Economic Strategy as the drivers of inclusive, economic growth – innovation, internationalisation, and investment in our people. It offers a mechanism for business to understand how they can demonstrate their contribution to Scotland's National Performance Framework and Scotland's Fair Work Framework. The elements focus on progressive business practices that have been shown to increase productivity and competitiveness.

In 2018 we conducted a review of the Scottish Business Pledge. In response to feedback from that review, we will refresh the structure of the Business Pledge to ensure alignment with the Fair Work Framework and relevance to Fair Work First is clear.

To refresh the Business Pledge structure and approach, we will:

  • Keep the real Living Wage as the core element of the Business Pledge.
  • Retain the light touch/trust based registration model valued by business.
  • Refresh the language around the employment aspects of the Business Pledge to fully reflect the Fair Work Framework and wider inclusive growth ambitions.
  • Include an additional core element that focuses on improving workforce Diversity, particularly around the Gender Pay Gap.
  • Add environmental impact as a new Business Pledge element.
  • Develop a new "menu" approach that retains the core ask (Living Wage and two other elements), and seeks commitment to adopt a further five from the remaining seven elements over time. This will offer businesses an opportunity for a more tailored approach to the circumstances of each organisation.
  • Support signatories to the Business Pledge to achieve or progress on each of the elements through a business to business learning network.
  • Build momentum and impact through a Business Pledge leadership group that will offer strategic direction to the learning network and to promotion of the Business Pledge.
  • Work with existing Business Pledge companies to support them to achieve the refreshed approach where appropriate.

Note: The Fair Work First criteria is included in the refreshed Business Pledge: three of the criteria are core elements of the Pledge and the other two criteria are reflected in the optional elements of the Pledge.


Email: Ruaridh.Hayes@gov.scot

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