Sustainability

We aim to be sustainable – whether that’s through supporting our local community, helping charities or being as green as we can.

For us, sustainability means more than just recycling – though we do that as well. It means making sure our local community benefits from our work, reaching out and supporting charities and their work, and ensuring people have a safe and supportive workplace.

Supporting our community

We have a big presence in the Hull and East Yorkshire region and make business decisions with the potential impact on this community in mind.

Our community relations programme focuses on activities that support the growth and sustainability of the local economy and aim to increase life opportunities for local residents.

Our support is not just about raising and donating money - it’s about getting involved. We encourage our people to volunteer their time and expertise through these many small contributions we take our business into the heart of the community.

Supporting the region's young people

As a technology company, it’s in our interest to encourage young people to consider careers in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). 

We deliver STEM-focused activities in local schools and colleges and we're also an employer sponsor of the Ron Dearing UTC, providing high quality work placements and mentoring for students.

Ron Dearing UTC
KCOM Learning Zone

Free sessions to help people get online

Based in our Learning Zone at our head office in Hull city centre, our monthly drop-in sessions are staffed by KCOM’s own volunteer ‘Digital Champions’.

The Learning Zone is an accredited UK Online Centre through the Good Things Foundation, a charity supporting digitally and socially excluded people to improve their lives through digital technology. 

The sessions help people of all ages and abilities get online and learn how to use the internet to stay in touch with friends and family, online, pay household bills and provide easy access to interests and information.

Read more about our work

Help to get online

Help to get online

Need help getting online? We hold free drop-in sessions on the first Tuesday of every month.

Cecily discovers benefits to being online

Cecily discovers benefits to being online

It’s puzzles Cecily Leyland likes, not the puzzling ways of making your computer work.

George joins the online age with help from KCOM

George joins the online age with help from KCOM

Today 89-year-old George Marsh joined the other 1.79 billion people on Facebook.

Facts and figures*

Our people spent 2,650 hours volunteering.

We held learning activities in 65 local schools and colleges.

We provided support to 158 local charities and community groups.

* (Annual Report and Accounts 2017/18)

Charity support

Working with The Prince's Trust

Nationally, we’re a patron of The Prince's Trust, the UK's leading youth charity helping 11 to 30 year-olds who are unemployed or struggling at school to transform their lives.

The Trust is a natural fit as a community partner for us. Young people are our customers and employees of the future, so we believe we have a part to play in supporting them to fulfil their potential. We encourage our employees to volunteer - for example, by delivering vital life skills workshops, helping a young person create their first CV, or becoming a long-term mentor.

The Prince's Trust

We also encourage our people across KCOM to take part in many national charity appeals including Movember for Prostate Cancer; Jeans for Genes, Comic Relief, Sport Relief and BBC Children in Need.

Employee charity committees

At our offices throughout the UK, employees are encouraged to support local charities through our charity committees, which have budgets and the freedom to choose causes to help in their local area.

Employee support

We recognise that our people often support charities in their own time and we offer advice, promotional support and donations to support employees' fundraising for charitable events they're involved in.

Supporting our people

Our people matter to us – so we do all we can to make sure we provide a safe and inclusive place to work and where everyone feels able and inspired to reach their potential.

Health, safety and wellbeing

Health, safety and wellbeing

It’s vital our people are safe, happy and healthy at work. So we go beyond meeting statutory requirements - not just because good health and safety standards have an impact on our business, but because it’s the right thing to do.

Education is a key part of our approach to employee wellbeing. Our health and wellbeing programme provides information and self-help tools to support physical and mental health and wellbeing.

We also offer free confidential health screening sessions where employees can have their blood pressure, blood sugar levels, cholesterol and body fat percentage checked by an independent third party to help them identify potential health issues. Our people also have the option to buy other medical and dental services through our flexible benefits scheme.

Developing talent and life long learning

Our people embark on a professional journey when they join us. We’re very much aware of our responsibility to ensure everyone feels valued and is supported to grow.

From day one, everyone has their own development action plan. We’ve invested significantly in tools, such as an online e-learning portal, to create an environment of continuous and flexible learning opportunities.

We also have mentoring, networking, ‘buddy’ schemes and time set aside with managers to discuss an individual’s progress on their career and development path – all of which contributes to our people developing the skills that they - and our business - will need in the future.

Developing talent and life long learning

Diversity and inclusion

We’re committed to providing equal opportunities and will not tolerate discrimination of any kind. We do this by making sure everyone has the same opportunities to grow and succeed.

Our people are expected to embrace a culture of diversity and to act respectfully and with consideration for others. We're always exploring how we can help every member of our team make the most of their talents through:

  • Fair and equal promotion and pay policies
  • Transparent recruitment processes
  • Individual career development
  • Ensuring a healthy work/life balance

Employee surveys

We listen to our people and seek their views through our quarterly employee surveys and our Let’s Talk programme, through which our people are encouraged to have regular, honest conversations with their managers.

Reward and recognition

Our reward initiatives go beyond competitive salaries and benefits. They include:

  • A bonus scheme
  • Our peer-to-peer Star recognition scheme which rewards achievement and contribution
  • A day off on your birthday
  • Long service awards
  • The opportunity to own shares in the company

View the full range of benefits here.

A sustainable supply chain

We have a responsibility to our customers to ensure we tackle the issues that are important to them and we expect our partners and suppliers to share the ethics and standards we work to.

The Hull and East Yorkshire region is the birthplace of our business and we are proud to play our part in local life. Unemployment rates in Hull are high in comparison to England as a whole and this has strengthened our resolve to support the local economy wherever we can.

Tackling digital exclusion

The government has highlighted 'digital exclusion' as a key risk facing the UK. People may be digitally excluded due to a lack of internet access or a lack of digital skills.

Digital inclusion can result in people feeling more connected with their families and communities. It can increase the job opportunities available to them, enable them to save money through shopping online and provide access to government services that are increasingly moving online.

We help tackle digital exclusion by:

Making a significant investment in the provision of full fibre broadband to enable people to communicate and do business online.

Providing low cost PCs, tablets or laptops and affordable broadband packages.

Holding regular online skills sessions.

Working with local councils and other organisations to support their digital inclusion activities.

Helping customers stay safe online

We want our customers and their families to be safe when using the internet, so we encourage customers to sign up to our free parental controls service.

The service means families can decide whether or not to filter certain categories of content. If they wish to, they can choose from a number of profile suggestions that give the option to block adult websites and other content they consider inappropriate.

We are a supporter of Internet Matters, a not-for profit organisation that helps parents keep their children safe in the digital world. We are also members of the Internet Watch Foundation, an international organisation focused on making the internet a safer place.

Helping customers
Supporting vulnerable customers

Supporting vulnerable customers

We make sure vulnerable residential customers can get access to affordable phone services, and we’re committed to helping all our customers keep in touch more easily.

Customers who receive unwanted calls – such as silent, malicious or nuisance calls - can register for help reduce these.

If a customer is unable to leave their house due to disability or illness, a telephone becomes a vital lifeline. That’s why we offer a free priority repair service for customers who may be at risk in the unlikely event of a fault occurring on their line.

For customers who have difficulty reading our standard printed material, we offer large print or Braille contracts, bills and manuals. We also offer a free directory enquiry service and a text phone service for customers who are deaf, hard of hearing, speech-impaired or blind.

We offer an online video service that allows customers who are deaf to communicate with our customer service team using British Sign Language (BSL) via a fully qualified interpreter.

We want to make sure that customers on a limited budget can afford a phone service. Our social access package light user scheme gives low-cost line rental and inclusive calls for customers who receive certain benefits.

Sustainable suppliers

We expect our partners and suppliers to share our ethics and standards so that our customers can be confident goods and services they buy from us have been developed responsibly, lawfully, in decent working conditions, without exploiting the people who make or deliver them, and without damaging the environment.

We have a Supplier and Partner Code of Conduct that all of our suppliers and partners are required to follow. We have regular meetings with our key suppliers and work closely with them to ensure we understand how their businesses operate, their approach to sustainability and their own corporate responsibility.

Sustainable suppliers
Environmental sustainability

Environmental sustainability

While we have a relatively low environmental impact as a business, it’s still vital to us to be as green as we can be.

We have been on a journey to reduce the environmental impact of our business over many years. Early on, we realised that in order for us to be ‘greener’ it was crucial to have good environmental management in place, both to ensure compliance with all environmental legislation and to help us plan future improvements.

Our Environment Management System is fully compliant with the ISO14001 Environmental Standard we’re continuously working to it and make sure it’s fully integrated into our day-to-day business processes.

Though overall responsibility for environmental sustainability sits with our Board, a team of specialists from across the business develops green initiatives. The Environmental Sustainability Operations Team (ESOT) focuses on areas that will have the biggest impact and actively promotes green initiatives so that everyone knows how to play their part.

Related pages

Gender pay gap

We’re committed to addressing our gender pay gap and to bringing greater balance to our business.

Standards, policies and codes

Environmental policies and industry standards and codes are important for us to become a more responsible and sustainable business.

Modern slavery statement

Discover how we're working to tackle modern slavery in the workplace.