Mailing house MetroMail will roll-out a bumper cost-of-living package to its staff to support them through the current period of high inflation, compounded by soaring prices for raw materials and energy.
All of the Seaham, County Durham-based firm’s colleagues will receive a two-stage £1,000 cost-of-living payment, split between their September 2022 and February 2023 pay.
Additionally, the company’s annual pay review will be brought forward from February 2023 – its new financial year – to December 2022, meaning staff will receive a 5% increase in their base pay two months earlier than planned.
In a statement jointly issued by managing director Tim Smith and director of finance and operations Neil Hoban, the pair said this means the majority of its staff will have received an average 11% increase in pay in the year ending February 2023 [the compound impact of the 5% increase in February 2022 plus the planned 5% December increase], plus a 5% bonus and the £1,000 cost-of-living support.
While measures introduced by the government will help ease some of the potentially severe pressures on household budgets, the business said, it was nevertheless committed to doing all it could to support its staff, “especially through these challenging times”.
The company will continue to review the cost-of-living pressures during 2023 and consider if more action is required.
“Not withstanding this is a direct bottom line hit but we remain confident that our loyal, dedicated and hardworking colleagues along with continued customer backing will enable us to work through these challenging times,” said Hoban.
He told Printweek that the response to this announcement had been “extremely positive and has alleviated a lot of fears that our staff were having over the cost-of-living crisis”.
“One colleague in particular commented ‘brilliant news, it is really going to help over the difficult winter’.”
At its 13,000sqm site, MetroMail has 105 permanent staff, and this is often flexed up to around 135 staff in peak periods of demand. It operates a wide range of print and finishing equipment servicing the transactional, direct mail, and fulfilment markets.
“Our digital and inkjet printing technology together with a read and print process and a wide range of enclosing machines allows us to enclose selectively up to 24 items in either envelope, poly, or paper wrap, producing personalised mailings for any customer requirement. We also have an Intelligent Letter Sorter that enables our customers to maximise postage discounts on all mailing volumes,” Hoban added.