Modern slavery is a crime and a violation of fundamental human rights. It takes various forms, such as slavery, servitude, forced and compulsory labour and human trafficking, all of which have in common the deprivation of a person’s liberty by another in order to exploit them for personal or commercial gain.
JJO recognise that modern slavery and human trafficking is a violation of fundamental human rights and is contrary to the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
The company have a zero-tolerance approach to modern slavery, and we are committed to acting ethically and with integrity in all our business dealings and relationships and to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure modern slavery is not taking place anywhere in our own business, or in any of our supply chains.
The company will take steps to ensure that modern slavery and human trafficking are not taking place in its own business, or within any of its supply chain.
This will be achieved by ensuring: -
This policy applies to all persons working for us, or on our behalf in any capacity, including employees at all levels, directors, officers, agency workers, agents, contractors, external consultants, third-party representatives, and business partners.
The Board of Directors has overall responsibility for ensuring this policy complies with our legal and ethical obligations, and that all those under our control comply with it.
Line managers at all levels are responsible for ensuring those reporting to them understand and comply with this policy and are given adequate and regular training on it and the issue of modern slavery in supply chains.
Our zero-tolerance approach to modern slavery must be communicated to all suppliers, contractors, and business partners at the outset of our business relationship with them and reinforced as appropriate thereafter.
Every employee has an individual responsibility to ensure compliance with this Policy, including being alert to the risk of such unlawful practices.
In addition, we will notify the relevant authorities of an individual, or a supplier’s contravention of the Modern Slavery Act.
This Policy will be reviewed annually to ensure that it reflects current legislation and regulations.
This policy has the full support and commitment of senior management.
Signed on behalf of JJO plc:
Implementation Date: 18th December 2020
Reviewed Date: 17th December 2021
We are an employer required by law to carry out Gender Pay Reporting under the Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017.
This involves carrying out calculations that show the difference between the average earnings of men and women in our organisation; it will not involve publishing individual employee’s data.
The revised UK Corporate Governance Code ('2018 Code') was published in July 2018 and applies to accounting periods beginning on or after January 1, 2019. The Companies (Miscellaneous Reporting) Regulations 2018 ('2018 MRR') require Directors to explain how they considered the interests of key stakeholders and the broader matters set out in section 172(1) (A) to (F) of the Companies Act 2006 ('S172') when performing their duty to promote the success of the Company under S172. This includes considering the interest of other stakeholders which will have an impact on the long-term success of the company. The Board welcomes the direction of the UK Financial Reporting Council (the 'FRC'). This S172 statement explains how J & J Ormerod Plc ("JJO") Directors:
The S172 statement focuses on matters of strategic importance to JJO, and the level of information disclosed is consistent with the size and the complexity of the business.
General confirmation of Directors' duties
When making decisions, each Director ensures that he/she acts in the way he/she considers, in good faith, would most likely promote the Company's success for the benefit of its members as a whole, and in doing so have regard (among other matters) to:
S172(1) (A) "The likely consequences of any decision in the long term" The board of JJO always considers the short, medium and long-term impact of strategic decisions taken by the company. Where possible these decisions are taken in light of structural changes to national and international markets, shifts in the economy and wider social trends. For example JJO have long followed a policy of waste minimalization and energy efficiency, winning nationally recognised awards in these areas, such as in 2011 we were National Runner up in the EEF future manufacturing awards in the energy efficiency category whilst in 2017 we were the winner of the North West green heroes award in the same category, which has in turn developed a culture of sustainability in the business.
S172(1) (B) "The interests of the company's employees"
JJO established a formal framework for employee communication over 10 years ago. The Works committee is made up of representatives of each department of the business and they meet on a bi-monthly basis where they are able to bring concerns and questions to Directors of the company. On at least two occasions per year this will be the Managing Director. The Works committee addresses all areas of concern for staff members such as training, working conditions and career development. During the negotiations around the 2019 salary review the committee highlighted concerns of staff around the length of the working week. As a result of this the working work was reduced by 3 hours per week, with no loss of earnings and productivity was maintained at previous levels. We also operate a 'Manager's Forum' where management and supervisory staff share best practice and explore ways to enhance operations.
In 2010 JJO introduced an 'Employee charter' which clearly laid out the principals and standards expected by the company for interactions between employees. The key message was one of mutual respect. The Directors are all long-term employees of the business who operate an open door policy to any staff issues. The company understands that its key asset is the workforce who individually and collective drive the business forward. To ensure that this is perpetuated, the company provides structured training and rewards to all engaged staff.
On 2nd March 2021 the shareholders sold 67% of the shares in the holding company, JJO Holdings Limited, to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT). Whilst the first duty of the EOT is to operate in the commercial interests of the company, the second imperative is to act in the interests of the employees. To this end we have appointed an EOT steering committee which shadows the decisions made by the board of directors. The trustees are also consulted about decisions of major significance.
S172(1) (C) "The need to foster the company's business relationships with suppliers, customers and others" JJO prides itself on the longevity of relationships with suppliers and customers. We have been dealing with our main supplier of painted and timber doors in Italy for over 40 years, other main suppliers have been trading with the business for decades. With these principal suppliers we settle accounts within 14 days of receiving goods, in exchange for a payment discount. This generates a spirit of trust and cooperation. We enjoy similar long term and mutually productive relationships with customers, a number of whom are second generation contacts. Relationships with customers are helped by regular visits from established and emphatic Area sales managers. A further advantage enjoyed by the business is that we make deliveries on our own fleet of trucks operated by our own drivers, who are proud to act as ambassadors for the business. JJO also enjoys long term relationships with its Bankers, having been with Nat West since they were the District Bank. We have traded with the same Insurance Broker for over 40 years.
S172(1) (D) "The impact of the company's operations on the community and the environment" JJO has operated from its premises in Rossendale for over 150 years, that level of longevity generates a heritage and tradition that knits into the very fabric of the local community. As one of the larger employers in the area we feel a duty to lead by example in terms of best practice. In addition to employing multiple generations and members of the same families, we activity display our commitment to localism by placing orders with businesses in the area, be they builders or printers. We are also active in support of local good causes supporting Stacksteads Brass band, sponsoring Bacup Borough Football Club and donating to Rossendale Hospice. Our Managing Director is also a director of the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, Growth Lancashire Ltd and an active member of the Rossendale business leaders' forum.
S172(1) (E) "The desirability of the company maintaining a reputation for high standards of business conduct" JJO uses the strength of its balance sheet to ensure that it exceeds government guidance on the prompt payment of invoices, ensuring that suppliers are treated fairly. In terms of product quality, the company has achieved the FIRA gold award for excellence in furniture quality and customer service. The business was also proud to reach the exacting standards required to attain ISO standards 9001 (Quality management), 14001 (Environmental management), ISO45001 (Health and Safety management) and 50001 (Energy management).
S172(1) (F) "The need to act fairly as between members of the company" JJO is a predominantly family owned business; after weighing up all relevant factors, the directors consider which course of action best enables delivery of our strategy through the long-term, taking into consideration the impact on stakeholders. The intention of the directors is to operate the business in a responsible manner, operating within the high standards of business conduct required in line with all regulatory requirements, and good governance expected for a business such as ours, and in doing so, will contribute to the delivery of our strategic plan.
The culture of our company has evolved over many years of successfully building a business. Whilst it does embody traditional beliefs, such as delivering value for money and mutual respect, it is modern, inclusive and fit for 21st Century. We recognise that history is appreciated but the present and future are of greater significance.
Stakeholder engagement (including employee engagement)
The company operates a two-way system of information exchange for views, questions and best practice. Shopfloor workers are represented by the Works council, supervisory and management is represented by the Manager forum, whilst high level Management sit on the Executive committee. These bodies meet bi-monthly and the chair of each group also sits on another body to ensure continuity. We also operate a bi-monthly in house magazine 'JJO journal' which details developments small and large within the business, and this is circulated to employees, suppliers, customers and other stakeholders as appropriate.
A - Returning to normal following Covid
As the Covid crisis abated the focus of the business in the year was to return to a situation approaching normality. This was complicated by issues in various supply chains and almost constant price increases. Ensuring that quality of supply to customers was maintained was a key focus.
B - Transition to Employee ownership trust
The company became employee-owned 2nd March 2021. Our already highly engaged and involved workforce exhibited even greater commitment to the success of the business.
This statement was approved by the board of directors on 12 August 2022.