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How to get the most out of participating in Best Employers 2018

How to get the most out of participating in Best Employers 2018

Best Employers Eastern Region provides real-time data on employee engagement levels within your organisation, the opportunity to benchmark your business against others, and the chance of being crowned one of the region’s best employers. To help those who are participating for the first time this year, we’ve asked four previous winners of the prestigious Best Employers Eastern Region Awards to share their main reasons for taking part, some examples of what they have put into practice as a result and their top tips for other organisations.

Ian White, CEO at Beckett Investment Management Group

Why did you take part in Best Employers Eastern Region?

“The greatest challenge, having recruited and built a high performing team, is to retain them. To do this you need to understand how your staff are feeling and to have a consistent measure of engagement levels.”

>What have you put into practice as a result? 

“We now run a smaller employee survey at 90-day intervals. This is made up of just nine questions and covers the subjects of vision, leadership and empowerment. The results provide a regular snapshot on the business and we also share a confidential summary with each employee which shows them how they rate against the whole company.”  

What is your top tip for Best Employers participants?

“Remember that employee engagement is a journey. Treat the survey as a signpost of how you are progressing, it is not something that should be done in isolation to other initiatives.”

Jayne Oakes, Director of Organisational Development & HR at Cashflows Ltd

Why did you take part in Best Employers Eastern Region?

“Because we are a business to business organisation, we don’t have a consumer brand name to attract people, so our employer brand is something we want to make more of.” 

What have you put into practice as a result? 

“We did a huge exercise around the employee benefits we provide. We completed a competitor analysis of other companies in our industry, the local area and best practice examples in general. As a result, we significantly enhanced our benefits package to compete within the top quartile of companies in Cambridge.”

What is your top tip for Best Employers participants?

“Try and make sure that decisions are made quickly, so employees can see their good ideas come to fruition.”

Rachel Coquard, Head of HR at Allia Ltd

Why did you take part in Best Employers Eastern Region?

“What our employees think, is fundamental to the whole performance of our organisation. All the great work we do only happens because of our team, they really are our greatest asset. As our plan is to continue to grow, it’s critical that we ensure our values and our people remain at the heart of everything we do.”

What have you put into practice as a result? 

“We’ve started to look at bringing people from different sites together through more team events and at different ways of communicating across a wider network, including introducing a staff intranet and more established one-to-ones. We’ve also introduced six-monthly team briefings to ensure everyone understands the business and to share information on what we are trying to achieve. We will continue to monitor our engagement levels by using the Best Employers Eastern Region survey and by introducing our own smaller staff surveys in between.”

What is your top tip for Best Employers participants?

“Our main tips are to be prepared for honest feedback and to engage people from the outset. It’s important to clearly communicate why you are introducing an employee survey and to show that you are committed to acting on results. Encourage honest input by making sure people know that it is anonymous and confidential and that you want to know both the good and the bad so that you can develop an action plan based on the feedback.”

Dr Lynn Morgan, CEO at Arthur Rank Hospice Charity

Why did you take part in Best Employers Eastern Region?

“People tend to work for a charity because they believe in its aims and this means they also tend to work extra hard to achieve them. This makes it even more important for us to check that our staff are getting great job satisfaction in return and that they understand just how much they are valued. If someone was feeling unsupported or disgruntled it would be important for us to know about this.”

What have you put into practice as a result? 

“We produce a fortnightly bulletin to keep our teams updated on everything relating to our business and news within the hospice. All departments have regular team meetings which allow us to cascade important information and we’ve created a staff forum where employees can feed in any questions, comments and wishes. We often hold all staff information sessions which have been particularly important in managing change during the transition from the old hospice to the new hospice.”

What is your top tip for Best Employers participants?

“The opportunity to add in your own questions to the survey is very useful because then you can address any particular issues which are pressing in your organisation.”

For more information about Best Employers Eastern Region, or to sign up to take part, visit www.best-employers.co.uk