Energy firm Powergen plans to offer its 5000-plus staff internet-enabled home PCs for £8 a month in an attempt to increase the IT literacy of its workforce.
The plan, called [email protected], gives users Hewlett Packard Pavilion desktop PCs and internet access through the firm's own internet service provider package. It is part of a scheme that will see Powergen adopt an 'e-first' approach to the distribution of information within the company.
On special 'digital days' all photocopiers will be switched off, and staff will use the firm's intranet to claim expenses, order office supplies and access one-time paper-based reports, which will only be available in electronic formats.
Chief executive Nick Baldwin said: "We have been looking closely at how the best US companies are leading the way in ecommerce. Although Powergen is ahead of many UK companies in embracing the internet, we still have a long way to go before access to the web is a way of life.
"Home PCs for our employees is the platform for changing that culture. A web-enabled workforce, having experienced the possibilities of the web at home, will think 'web first' at work. Our employees win and our business wins."
The scheme takes advantage of government tax breaks that allow the use of company computer equipment for private purposes so long as the benefit in kind is below £500 per annum.
Powergen is using a package designed by PeoplePC, which also provides the firm with support for the equipment leased to staff.
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