Commuting during Covid-19 and Beyond

THE COMMUTER LANDSCAPE IS CHANGING...

If your business is essential, or you’ve started to reopen your physical workplace since government guidelines changed, you and your employees may have discussed or considered alternative routes to work to stay safe and avoid public transport....

As transport secretary Grant Shapps announced plans for a £250M emergency “active travel fund” to finance wider pavements for walking and new, segregated cycle tracks, we can assume that as we start to return to normal commuting routines, many of us will be looking to make a  longer-term change to our regular mode of transport.

In fact, 53% of UK commuters are now considering cycling to work, but only 7% of businesses are actively looking into how a cycle to work scheme could facilitate this. 

If your business is one of the 93% without a cycle to work scheme, ask yourself:

why are you  not considering it?

It’s a tax-efficient method for employees to purchase a bike, through a salary deduction on their pre-tax income.

They can save anywhere from 28-31% on the retail price of a bike - including electric bikes, and certain accessories, such as protective clothes, helmets, lights and padlocks. This allows them to get everything they need to hit the road safely, while spreading the costs over 12 to 18 months.  

Not only does it help ease the financial burden of purchasing a bike outright for your employees, it also shows a proactive approach to helping your employees navigate their health concerns and need to return to work.

This is an extremely stressful time for everyone, so the businesses that are able to react to the needs of their team are going to weather this storm much better than those who put operations or profits ahead of the health and safety of their people.

As we look beyond Covid-19, trends such as remote working and cycling to work are likely to continue as your team benefit from the positive effects it has on their health and wellbeing, as well as the money they’ll save commuting on public transport.

Cycle To Work Schemes - Help Your Employees Avoid Public Transport If you would like to find out more about how you can implement a cycle to work  scheme for your business, click here.

Not only can employees save money on their commute and on the purchase of their bike, they can also save up to 42% in tax and national insurance contributions. The savings don’t just impact your team, though. As an employer, you’ll be able to save up to 13.8% on national insurance payments through the salary sacrifice arrangement. 

At Sodexo Engage, we offer a full end-to-end service, including end-of-hire management, to let your employees keep their bikes for a fair price if they want to. By implementing this employee benefit into your business you’ll also be supporting your employees’ wellbeing. Cycling is a highly effective exercise, working every muscle group and also helps to cut serious health risks by over 40%.

By taking a proactive role in your employees’ health and wellbeing, as well as ensuring they feel safe not only at work, but in their commute to and from work, you'll be increasing your retention levels thanks to a happier and healthier workforce who are more motivated to stay with you for the long-term.

If you would like to find out more about how we can help you implement your very own cycle to work scheme, get in touch today.

WHAT ABOUT WHEN CYCLING ISN'T AN OPTION?

For some, cycling isn’t going to be a practical solution to avoid public transport during Covid-19; nor or a way to reduce their carbon footprint. However, ultra-low emission cars can be a good alternative. 

Again, through a salary sacrifice scheme, your employees and your business can benefit from financial savings by swapping a proportion of their pre-taxed salary for a new car. We offer the biggest choice in cars in the business to help employees find the right one for them.

With over 18,000 cars to choose from, there’s something for everyone.

As an added bonus, we also cover annual servicing and maintenance, insurance, road tax, roadside assistance and even replacement tyres; helping employees manage their finances without having to worry about something going wrong. 

We also understand, especially during this uncertain time, that you’re busy taking care of the needs of your workforce, so any employee benefits such as cycle to work or car schemes need to involve as little admin as possible! That’s why we handle negotiations with suppliers for you, automating payments and dealing with any queries your employees may have - so you don’t have to.  

Salary Sacrifice Car Schemes - A Scheme for Everyone If you would like to find out more about how a salary sacrifice car scheme  could work for your business, click here.

During these turbulent times, HR is under a huge amount of pressure to look out for the best interests of their people, and manage the practicalities that need to be considered from a people and business perspective.

If you’re looking for practical tips and solutions that you can pass on to your team, from mental and physical health support to tips to help manage the return to work, as well as insights into how the pandemic will affect HR in the future, we’ve got you covered. Visit our HR solutions for Covid-19 to find out more.  

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Click here for more information on our HR solutions for Covid-19