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Latest top employer rankings confirm that a sense of purpose is crucial

In today’s highly volatile economic market, good employees are a company’s greatest asset

Among the companies taking part in the annual Great Place to Work competition, those that managed to land the top slots could all boast many of the same qualities. A deep sense of purpose in individual positions, clear mission and objectives and strong organisational values all contributed to great employee engagement and satisfaction and, of course, votes.

The big boys at the top

Softcat, McDonald’s Restaurants, Salesforce, Cisco and Capital One all found themselves the recipient of the Great Place to Work 2016 award for larger companies. These awards, in which employers can encourage their employees to vote, are all voluntary. Through their multiple choice nomination system, they offer a very useful insight into how companies can create sustainable employee engagement.

In this category, the organisation behind the awards, Great Workplaces, identified that transparency within the business was key. Staff, managers, customers and shareholders all benefit from a workplace culture that is clear, approachable and based on trust. From the bottom up, employees, team managers and overall managers need to engage in a mutual performance of trust, which gives big companies a small company feel and makes them places in which people are happy to work.

Medium enterprises leading the way

In the medium-sized category, RHP Group, Cosatto, Goodman Masson, R Twining & Company and UKFast all managed to make the grade. These groups all saw levels of trust rated at around the 85% mark, compared with 55% in similar companies across the UK. Trust was seen as a vital component in encouraging effective teamwork and employee buy in, which contributes exponentially to the company’s success.

Vision and objectives were also key in this category. Making sure that medium-sized companies have the big company sense of power and attainable goals also makes employees feel great.

Small companies making a big difference

In the 20- to 40-employee category, Foundation SP, DMW, Futureheads Recruitment, Resurgo and New Chapter Consulting all showed that they have what it takes to be a great place to work. Smaller companies traditionally have a greater opportunity to excel in trust and transparency but face other obstacles. With so many roles tending to overlap in smaller companies, and the need for flexibility in both function and objective, a sense of purpose can be hard to maintain; however, these companies all showed that they have what it takes to make it to the top.

Employee engagement and satisfaction

Overall, these companies can teach us all about how best to encourage employee engagement. Whether this is through creating a culture of transparency and trust, through ensuring every employee has purpose and vision or through presenting strong organisational values, the encouragement is appreciated. No matter what the job, these three factors done well can make all the difference between a role in which an employee feels satisfied in and one they are looking forward to leaving.

In today’s highly volatile economic market, good employees are a company’s greatest asset. Ensuring they are nurtured in an environment that will bring out their best performance, both as individuals and in a team, is key.

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