Ringwood Brewery offers choice around personal development allowances

The Ringwood Brewery in Hampshire has a PDA policy that allows staff to spend their £500 yearly allowance on almost anything. However, it does impose some restrictions such as only being able to spend up to £250 on gym membership. Office manager, Lin Black, says she hasn’t yet turned down a request, but would if there are any risks involved with activities employees suggested. "Skydiving, where there is a degree of risk to the employee, or motorbike racing are probably the only type of things we wouldn’t be that happy about. If [staff are] injured doing an activity that we had sponsored, not only do we lose them from a work point of view, but I’m not sure what the [legal] implications could be."

She adds that while the activities staff spend their PDA on might not be directly work-related, employees come back to work "more confident and probably more contented because they feel supported by the Brewery".