Terms and conditions of service (UK)

Head Office, UK

We believe that our people are our key asset. Ultimately it is only through talented and committed staff that we can effectively deliver practical answers to our beneficiaries and influence others to build on our philosophy to deliver practical answers to poverty.

We recognise that people seek balance between their work and home commitments and in our terms and conditions of service we seek to recognise that.


Salaries are paid two weeks in advance, two weeks in arrears directly into bank account. They are usually paid in the 15th of every month, however if the 15th of the month falls on a Saturday, Sunday or Bank Holiday, then they are paid in on the previous Friday.


Contracted hours are 35 hours per week. Although formal attendance times are 9am to 5pm, with an hour for lunch, we operate a flexitime system. Core attendance times are 10am to 12 noon and 2pm to 4pm.

Annual leave

Your annual holiday entitlement is 25 days of which two or three days, as agreed annually, must be taken at the Christmas close down while in the UK. The local equivalent overseas will apply where relevant. For part time staff, entitlement will be derived on a pro-rata basis. Staff are entitled to take holiday after they have served three months of their probationary period.

You are entitled to public holidays and Christmas Eve. Your holiday year runs from 1 January to 31 December.

Other leave allowances

  • Increased maternity, paternity and parental leave in line with statutory increases
  • 3 days paid dependency leave.
  • Up to 10 days compassionate leave
  • One week unpaid leave for any purpose other than paid employment (after 12 months service)

Childcare vouchers

Practical Action runs a childcare voucher scheme, which can save you tax on childcare costs. Childcare Vouchers cover children up to 16 years of age. They are non-taxable and exempt from National Insurance Contributions. Vouchers can be used to pay for a wide range of childcare provision, but all carers who receive vouchers as payment must either be registered with Ofsted or the equivalent authority for Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland or have approved status.

Probationary period

There is a standard probationary period of three months for all new employees. During this period we are happy to honour previously booked holiday arrangements but otherwise, it is appreciated if no lengthy holidays are taken during this period.

During your probation period, the length of notice period is shortened, to a week or month’s notice either side, depending on grade of your job. You will receive a full induction into the job and the organisation, and will be fully briefed on our performance management process. At the end of probation, you and your line manager will conduct an appraisal interview that will form the basis for your performance and development agreement over the next 12 months

Pension scheme

Practical Action operates a Salary Sacrifice pension scheme with AEGON. New employees join the scheme from day one of employment. The employer contributes 10% of salary and the employee contributes 5%. For those who choose not to join the Salary Sacrifice pension scheme, auto enrolment on to the work place pension will take place contributions are 1% employer and 1% employee.


We recognise MSF (Manufacturing, Science and Finance), which is now a part of Unite. Union membership is not compulsory.

Performance Management process

Practical Action has developed a comprehensive, behavioural competency-based performance management process, which aims to provide personal and professional development as well as the optimum level of management support.

Bike to Work scheme

Practical Action participates in the Bike to Work scheme. This is a government sponsored initiative designed to encourage bicycle usage as part of their Green Transport Plan.

The scheme offers employees a tax advantage that means the cost of buying a bicycle is reduced by 30 to 45%. The scheme operates via a hire agreement between the member of staff and Practical Action; further details can be obtained from the HR Unit.


Business-related expenses paid as per the expense policy. Generally receipts are required. Mileage is paid at 45p per mile.

Overseas travel

A kit allowance paid each April, depending on the number of weeks spent out of the UK. All other reasonable expenses covered by expense policy as above.

No smoking

In line with recent legislation, Bourton Hall is a non-smoking environment.

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