Doing more good with digital
Our long-standing promise to make sure the power of connectivity benefits our customers and the communities we’re part of.
The focal point of Virgin Media’s sustainability strategy is Doing more good with digital, which we also call ‘Digital for Good’. This is our long-standing promise to make sure the power of connectivity benefits our customers and the communities we’re part of.
Being connected opens up a whole world of opportunities, enabling people to do more, be more and have more fun. From shopping and staying in touch with family, to accessing new ways of working and learning or even sparking major social change, the internet is one of the most powerful tools ever invented. But the people who can benefit the most from connectivity are also the people who are most in need of a helping hand, whether that means learning new skills, getting improved access to jobs or enjoying the benefits that ultrafast connectivity brings.
Our ability to keep this promise comes from our unique capabilities – we have a brand that has the power to inspire people; we have the UK’s fastest widely available broadband network*; and we have more than 10,000 people across the UK and Ireland ready to help us make this happen.
We’re engaging with the people and organisations for whom our unique capabilities can have the biggest impact. Right now, this is disabled people and small businesses, which we’re targeting through two flagship programmes:
Our Strategic Partnership with Scope
Currently there are nearly 14m disabled people in Britain. 7.2m are working age, and of that 3.6m are currently out of work. The disability employment gap is around 30% - it’s been stuck at this figure for a decade. This means that 50% of disabled people of working age are out of work, compared to 20% of non-disabled people.
Our research with Scope showed that:
- 74% of disabled people have lost out on a job because of their impairment
- When applying for jobs only half of applications result in an interview, compared with 69% for non-disabled applicants.
- Disabled people, on average, apply for 60 per cent more jobs than non-disabled people in their job search (on average 8 applications compared with 5).
- More than a third (37%) of disabled people who don’t feel confident about getting a job believe employers won’t hire them because of their impairment or condition.
This needs to change. That’s why, together with Scope, we’ve launched #WorkWithMe– a call to action for businesses to create more inclusive workplaces. Together with Scope, we are committed to giving 1 million disabled people advice, skills and confidence to get a job or stay in work by the end of 2020*.
Find out more about the #WorkWithMe pledge and the growing community of businesses committed to thinking and acting differently about disability in their organisations.
*As we refocused our Transforming Lives goal in 2017, we will continue to measure the impact of this goal until the end of 2020. All other goals will finish at the end of 2019.
That’s why we’ve partnered with Scope, the disability charity, to use digital technology to help remove the barriers that can stop disabled people having the same opportunities as everyone else. Find out more and join the conversation on social media using #WorkWithMe.
Make disability your business
Virgin Media, Scope and the Valuable 500 have teamed up to unlock the business, social and economic value of disabled people in the UK.
Together, we want to help enable a radical change in the way disability is valued by businesses. We’re making it happen by asking leading organisations to harness the economic power of disabled people by transforming their businesses to become more inclusive for disabled employees and customers.
Of course, change starts from the top. So The Valuable 500 is a call to action for the executive boards of 500 leading businesses to commit to putting disability on the agenda at the highest level by the end of 2019.
#WorkWithMe focuses on the day-to-day changes that add up to real transformation. We’re challenging senior leaders, responsible for managing key functions in a business, to create more inclusive businesses for disabled people – improving policies, sharing insight and pooling resources for the benefit for everyone.
Why are we doing this? Because building more inclusive businesses creates a more inclusive society. By making disability everyone’s business, we open up new possibilities. And there’s no more time to waste. Please join us.
We know that harnessing the power of digital technology can help unlock growth and generate wealth. Small businesses already contribute over half of all private sector turnover in the UK. With the right support, small businesses can continue to create jobs, contribute to local communities and help drive digital competitive advantage for the UK.
VOOM is our way of boosting the UK and Irish economies by creating opportunities for 100,000 small businesses to grow through digital.
Since 2010, VOOM has grown to become a unique and powerful community of entrepreneurs and small business owners who come together with Virgin Media to make connections, share their expertise, find peer-to-peer support and compete for their chance to ‘pitch to Rich’. The community is packed with great advice from successful start-ups, business leaders and leading brand partners like Virgin StartUp, Crowdfunder.co.uk, Paypal and LinkedIn.
The three areas we focus on:
- Boosting the speed of business: In 2017, Virgin Media Business launched VOOM Fibre, to become the only provider in the market to offer its top speed of 350Mbps as standard. After learning that the average employee loses 15 minutes a day to slow internet speeds, we went step further introducing adding a new speed of up to 500Mpbs, the fastest widely available speed in the market
- Building connections that really matter: The VOOM Pioneers digital platform provided a place for small business owners to meet like-minded entrepreneurs and potential business partners
- Getting ahead: From humble beginnings in 2011, VOOM Pitch has grown to become the UK and Ireland’s biggest pitching competition giving entrepreneurs the chance to pitch to Sir Richard Branson and giving away over £3.5 million worth of prizes to more than 52 businesses
 Combined annual turnover of SMEs was £2 trillion. Business population estimate for the UK and regions: 2018 statistical report, Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (DBIS)
 A small business with eight employees used for illustrative purposes only. Eight people losing 15 minutes for five days equals 600 minutes, or ten hours of time, lost. According to the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, businesses with 0-9 employees account for 96% of all UK businesses.
Speed claim: The UK’s fastest major business broadband provider based on Voom Fibre 350Mbps vs major UK B2B ISPs max: 314Mbps BT; 80Mbps O2; 76Mbps Plusnet; 76Mbps TalkTalk; and 76Mbps Vodafone. Virgin Fibre areas only.
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