Berneslai Benefits

If we trust our staff to get things done for our customers, then it’s only fair that we promise something in return.  We know our business will perform better if the people who work here feel fulfilled in their work, valued for their input, listened to by their managers and well cared for.

That is why we offer our staff lots of benefits that many companies find hard to match, including:

Do you offer flexible working?

We offer a number of flexible working schemes as listed below:

  • Annualised hours scheme
  • ‘Banked’ Time (Time off in Lieu)
  • Compressed Hours Scheme
  • Flexi Time
  • Flexible Working
  • Homeworking
  • Job Sharing
  • Part Time working
  • Shift Working Arrangements
  • Staggered Hours Scheme
  • Term Time Only Working
  • Work Break Scheme
How do you support home and work life balance?

Depending upon your length of service, we offer a number of policies and schemes to help you balance your home and work life. We offer

  • Maternity and Adoption Leave – this allows female employees paid leave when they are expecting a child. It also enables the mother or father, who is adopting the child, to have paid time off.
  • Paternity Leave – this allows employees 2 weeks paid leave to offer support or care to the expectant mother/expectant adopter at or around the time of the birth/placement.
  • Shared Parental Leave – this enables eligible parents to choose how to share the care of their child during the first year of birth or adoption. Its purpose is to give parents more flexibility in considering how to best care for, and bond with, their child.
  • Parental Leave – this gives employees the right to receive up to 18 weeks unpaid leave for the purpose of caring for a child. This includes looking after the welfare of the child, making arrangements for the good of the child such as spending time with the child in their early years, accompanying the child to hospital, or visiting new schools.
  • IVF Support Leave – this allows employees up to 5 working days of paid IVF fertility leave if it is not possible to arrange appointments outside of work. This applies to female employees who receive fertility treatment and to male employees who may also receive treatment during the IVF process.
  • Childcare Voucher Scheme – This helps working parents save money on childcare. They can be used for a wide range of care, including nurseries, nannies, childminders, after-school care and holiday play-schemes, for children up to age 15.


Would you support me if I wanted to undertake further study?

We are committed to ensuring excellence in learning and development activities, and to creating a culture that will ensure that the organisation attracts, motivates, develops and retains the very best staff.

We are accredited with Investors in People (IIP) Gold status which is the recognised benchmark for quality employers. The standard provides a national framework for improving business performance through a planned approach to setting and communicating business objectives and developing people to meet these objectives.

We achieve our business objectives by ensuring that all employees understand the importance of their individual contribution to our continued success. For this reason, we carry out annual Performance and Development Reviews, and arising from these positive joint discussions, personal targets are set, and any training or developmental needs are identified and recorded.

We offer a wide range of training opportunities, including internal courses and activities and e-learning delivered via our Electronic Training Management System. You are very much encouraged to share ownership of your own development, and take advantage of opportunities within your job role to build your knowledge and expertise, to take advantage of coaching and mentoring opportunities that are offered, and to read widely for interest and to keep up to date with the housing field.

We also encourage our people to continue their professional development and dependent upon eligibility you might:

  • Study University/College courses, related to your work paid for by us
  • Undertake training which will improve your effectiveness and the performance of the business.

We ensure that we constantly engage with our employees through the Performance and Development Review Process and also by:

  • Undertaking regular employee surveys which result in action plans to address any issued identified.
  • Having an annual staff conference to generate cross organisational discussion, and to improve organisational awareness. Welcoming employee suggestions and offering opportunities for individuals to participate in working groups or corporate community engagement activities, such as Berneslai Involvement Group (BIG), Chief Executive Coffee and a Chat sessions.
How do you look after the health and wellbeing of employees?

Our employees’ health and wellbeing is extremely important to us. We have been accredited with the Investors in People Health and Wellbeing Award. We will continue to work with our employees to ensure health and wellbeing is integrated into day-to-day activities which will help us to create and maintain a positive and healthy working environment.

Below are some of the ways we can help:

Gym/Health Club Discounted Membership – Discounted rates have been negotiated with the following gyms/health clubs allowing staff to gym membership at reduced prices:

  • BPL – Metrodome and other local Leisure Centres
  • Tankersley Manor
  • DW Sports, Barnsley
  • Life Style Fitness

Pilates – Pilates is available on Mondays at Westgate Plaza and Wednesdays at Gateway Plaza at reduced prices.

Walking Groups (Amblers and Ramblers) – We have two walking groups – Amblers for local walks around 3 miles and Ramblers for the more challenging walks (6 miles plus).  Both walking groups are held on Sundays and organised on a monthly basis.  These are social events, open to all including family, friends and dogs.

Physiotherapy – You can receive up to 6 physiotherapy sessions free of charge and receive advice and treatment for all musculoskeletal conditions from our expert Physiotherapist.

Confidential Counselling – Berneslai Homes offers a counselling service which provides professional support and guidance for staff on a range of problems. 

Occupational Health – We provide a comprehensive Occupational Health Service through Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust Occupational Health and Wellbeing Service.  This service includes pre-employment health screening, health/sickness referrals, guidance and advice, health surveillance.

Eye Tests – If you are assessed as a ‘user’ of Display Screen Equipment (computers), you may be entitled to support in using the equipment, eg subsidised eye tests and eyesight correction.

Healthcare Cash Plans – We offer two healthcare care plans which are an easy, affordable way to help cover those expected and unexpected health costs for you and your family. These are Westfield Health Care and Health Shield  

Flu Vaccination Programme – Each year, all “front line” employees are offered the Flu vaccination, free of charge.

Health and Wellbeing Checks – Health and Wellbeing checks are offered annually to all staff and are undertaken by specialist nurses from Barnsley Hospital’s Occupational Health Wellbeing Service. You can choose from or have all of the following checks:

  • eHeight weight – BMI Score
  • Cholesterol/ glucose from finger prick blood test
  • Blood Pressure
  • Individual lifestyle advice which includes, smoking, alcohol, exercise, diet, stress.

All of the above are supported with Health promotion literature.

Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Donors – Staff who volunteer to become a bone marrow or stem cell donor may be granted up to 7 working days paid leave to allow for the donation and recuperation.

Smoking Cessation – Berneslai Homes is committed to providing support, advice and assistance for employees to help smokers give up. We will facilitate the attendance of employees at classes organised by the Barnsley Stop Smoking Service.

Foot Care – Foot Care treatments are provided at Gateway Plaza on a monthly basis and bimonthly at Carlton Depot, for a reduced price.

Blood Donors – We allow staff time off during working hours, with pay, to act as a blood donor.

Religious Holidays – We allow flexibility for staff who request time off as special leave, or a temporary change to their working pattern for particular religious or cultural occasions. For example during Ramadan, particularly in the summer months, staff may need flexibility in working hours.  They may need to work fewer hours in consideration of the demands of fasting and its effects on productivity and concentration.

What green travel initiatives do you have in place?

Travel – Berneslai Homes is committed to improving the environment and encouraging healthier and safer lifestyles. In light of this, we have introduced a number of beneficial initiatives to help you choose greener forms of transport for work.

Cycle 2 Work Scheme – We run a Cycle 2 Work Scheme, which offers discounted bikes – giving you big savings, plus helping us with our environmental objectives – which is a ‘wheelie’ good idea! To qualify you must use your bike to commute either the whole or part of your journey to work.

 Car Allowance – For those staff who use their car for carrying out their duties, we offer a mileage allowance.

 Season Ticket Purchase for Rail Travel – The scheme allows you to buy an annual season ticket for travel from home to work. The season ticket may be used on any rail network and can also be used in non-work time or for business related travel.  Eligible staff are given a loan, which is repayable over 12 months.  There is no interest rate or administrative charge and no limit on the season ticket price.  Plus you pay for only 40 weeks travel and get 12 weeks free!


How do you support disabled employees in work?

We consider equality, diversity and inclusion to be central to our business not only as a service provider, but importantly for our employees.

We are committed to giving all staff equal access and equal opportunities in employment and training. We will not accept discrimination in the workplace and we will promote good relationships between different people.  We want Berneslai Homes to be a workplace where everyone can work happily and be themselves!

Positive About Disabled People – We have been awarded the Disability Confident symbol for our approach to employing disabled people.  The scheme is run by Job Centre Plus and aims to help employers successfully employ and retain disabled people and those with health conditions.

We are committed to:

  • Actively looking to attract and recruit disabled people
  • Providing a fully inclusive and accessible recruitment process
  • Offering an interview to disabled people who meet the essential criteria for a job
  • Making reasonable adjustments for staff as required

Supporting Disabled People at Work Policy – Berneslai Homes is committed to inspiring a culture where disabled employees can flourish and perform to the best of their ability, and experience high levels of job satisfaction. This policy enables a consistent approach to be taken to the provision of support for them in the workplace, and describes how we make reasonable adjustments for disabled employees.

Disability Leave Policy – This scheme provides disabled employees with reasonable paid time off work when they are unable to get to work for reasons related to their impairment and resulting disability.

How do you support equality, diversity and inclusion?

Equality Forums Berneslai Homes supports a number of Equality Forums including;

  • Barnsley Together (for Black and Minority Ethnic Communities)
  • My Barnsley Too (For people with disabilities)
  • Gender Equality Forum
  • Faith Equality Forum

Diversity Champions – We support staff who are passionate about equality and diversity to act as Diversity Champions. Diversity Champions play a key role in scrutinising our work and challenging us to do better with our equality and diversity agenda.

Mindful Employer – We have signed the Charter for Employers who are Positive about Mental Health.  This demonstrates our commitment in recruiting and retaining staff and increasing the awareness of mental health in the workplace.

Equality Related Policies – We have a number of highly regarded policies, setting out our inclusive approach. These include Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policies, Gender Reassignment, Sexual Orientation, and Domestic Abuse Workplace Policies.


What reward and recognition do you offer?

Loyal Service – We understand the importance of acknowledging and rewarding our long serving employees for their commitment and loyalty to the company. Upon your 25th year of continuous service with the company (including Barnsley MBC), employees receive High Street gift vouchers to the value of £100 as well as being awarded one day’s special leave with pay.

Attendance Awards – If you have 12 months excellent attendance you will be entered into an annual prize draw with the chance to win £200.

In addition, if you have 5 years excellent attendance, you will receive an additional day’s leave which will be added to the following year’s entitlement and you will also be entered in a prize draw with the chance to win £300.

Employee of the Month – Each month employees are asked to nominate a colleague or team who have demonstrated one or more of the GREAT values whilst undertaking their duties. The winner receives £20.00 in High Street Vouchers.

Employee of the Year – Winners of Employee of the Month for that year can then go on to win Employee of the Year. The winner is chosen by employees who are able to vote on who they feel best demonstrates our GREAT values.

Craft and Office Apprentice of the Year – All apprentices are nominated to win either Office or Craft Apprentice of the Year and their nominations are evaluated against a set of criteria to identify the winner.

Craft and Office Mentor of the Year – This award is to recognise the great work that mentors do in supporting our apprentices and is evaluated against a set of criteria to identify the winner.

Wider Wallet – We offer an employee benefits package which offers you privileged access to a tempting package of discounts and corporate benefits all designed to make your money stretch further.

Final Salary Pension Scheme – We are required by law to ‘auto enrol’ all employees into the Pension Scheme which is part of the South Yorkshire Pensions Scheme. This operates a occupational pension scheme which offers favourable benefits on retirement, providing peace of mind for the future.  Further details are provided upon commencement.

Reward (Pay Related Issues):

Pay – We aim to ensure that all employees are paid a fair salary for their role and we operate within nationally agreed pay scales. Salaries are paid by BACS transfer.  Your payslip will be delivered securely direct to your chose email address.

Our equal pay audit consistently shows the average pay for all employees is above the national average.

Expenses – Employees who are undertaking official duties are entitled to claim expenses so they are not put at a financial disadvantage. This can be for things like using public transport, subsistence and overnight subsistence.