Council workers may be losing a benefitOne UK local authority is considering scrapping an unusual employee benefits scheme, which sees staff rewarded the equivalent of almost three days pay for the time they spend waiting for a lift.

Rochdale council allows employees working on the tenth or 11th floors of the head office building to claim a five-minute ‘lift allowance’, which adds up to 20 hours’ pay a year.

However, as the recession rumbles on, the council is now considering stopping this perk, while other HR departments across the UK may find themselves facing similar budget pressures.

The scheme was first introduced 20 years ago after workers complained they were having to wait up to ten minutes for the lift.

Stephen Harper, the council’s head of HR, explained that it was originally introduced as employees stated their clock-in time should begin when they entered the building, rather than reached their desk.

However, he added: “Flexible working and faster, more reliable lifts mean it’s no longer as relevant.”

Phil Flaxton, chief executive of Workwise UK, recently claimed that HR departments considering introducing a pay freeze should include management in their plans.