Urging companies to pay the real Living Wage

We believe that the Living Wage is important because a fair day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay. Ending poverty pay is good for business and good for society.

In its seventh year, our Living Wage campaign has gone from strength to strength. 39 companies in the FTSE 100 – over one-third – now pay all of their direct staff and UK contractors enough to live off. The most recent Living Wage accreditations include Intertek, Croda International, Diageo (owners of Guinness and Johnnie Walker) and Landsec.

Why this is important and what we’re doing about it

We believe that the Living Wage is important because a fair day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay. Ending poverty pay is good for business and good for society.

At ShareAction, we think that Britain’s biggest companies should take the lead on fair pay, and that starts with the FTSE 100. We bring this issue to the fore with the bosses of these companies by mobilising savers and investors to get these companies to commit to ensuring all their staff earn enough to get by.

The Living Wage rates of £10.75 in London and £9.30 for the rest of the UK are independently calculated to meet basic needs for an individual and their family. 36 of the FTSE 100 and over 6,000 companies UK-wide have signed up to the accreditation standard of the Living Wage Foundation, agreeing to pay at least these rates for all their staff, including those employed through contractors on their UK sites. In practice this means the Living Wage has an impact upon more than 68,000 families across the UK – and counting!

With more than half of pension savers saying they want their pension to engage with investee companies about the Living Wage according to a YouGov survey, we’re helping savers take their concern to their pension funds. Hearing from savers gives pension funds, as big investors, a strong impetus to raise the issue with the biggest UK companies.

To make sure these supportive investors have the maximum voice, we mobilise them together in an Investor Collaborative for the Living Wage which calls upon the FTSE100 to adopt the UK Living Wage standard.

Meanwhile, we help keep the public eye on the companies that aren’t stepping up to make sure their workers earn enough to make ends meet.

And it’s been making huge strides! Check out the successes page to see how putting the pressure on the FTSE100 through investors is making an impact.

Latest news

Campaign resources

Investing in the Living Wage: A toolkit for responsible investors

This toolkit is primarily designed to help investors in UK markets understand how and why to encourage their portfolio companies to adopt the real Living Wage, as calculated in the UK by the Living Wage Foundation (LWF). It was produced in partnership with the Living Wage Foundation.


Insecure Work in Insecure Times

This briefing intends to build the case that the growth of  insecure work has been driven, willingly or not, by investor demands for shareholder value and that investors should therefore be considering and engaging with companies on how their workforce policies and practices might be driving greater insecure work.


Get in touch

Mara Lilley

Mara Lilley

Senior Campaigns Officer - Living Wage