We develop our culture of supporting and engaging all colleagues, prioritising their wellbeing and promoting diversity, and we provide opportunities for every colleague to reach their potential, celebrating their successes along the way.
We understand that one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to a great experience at work.
To help us to get this right we encourage our colleagues to share what it means for them, for instance by attending Let’s Talk With… sessions with our Chief Offices and Directors.
We have also run an independent survey for many years to give us an insight into how our colleagues are feeling, what they are happy with and what they feel needs to be improved. We took part in the Best Workplace study for the second time in 2017, which is a global initiative run by the Great Place to Work© Institute focused on how colleagues feel about their employer across a range of areas from communication to wellbeing.
The study is made up of an anonymous colleague survey and an independent review of our people policies and programmes – both elements produce an overall score which compares us against a range of other organisations who take part. We were delighted to be recognised amongst the UK’s Best Large Workplaces as a result.
This begins as soon as a colleague joins YBS Group with bespoke role-based inductions and our ‘Warm Welcome’ on-boarding programme.
Continuous learning and development is essential to give our colleagues the skills and knowledge required to deliver the best service to our customers. To keep up-to-date, our mandatory learning programme is delivered to all colleagues through annual online training courses and knowledge tests, covering the essential information and skills that all colleagues need.
We recognise that it’s important for our colleagues to be well-rounded individuals with diverse skills, both for their role but also for their own personal development. We encourage continuous learning through our ‘academy frameworks’, which are designed to enable colleagues to find learning opportunities easily to help improve their technical expertise or the competencies they may require for their current role or to move to a new role. Learning opportunities include a mix of formal courses and workshops, virtual resources through our internal ‘learning library’ and on the job learning. Our volunteering programmes also provide a wide range of options for colleagues to improve their skills and are promoted internally as another way of learning.
The bonus scheme reflects how well our customers think we perform as a whole and how each colleague contributes to our success individually.
However, recognition is about much more than pay, so together with our colleagues we have developed a recognition framework that enables both colleagues and managers to say thank you and share great examples of a job well done.
In 2015 we launched ‘Raising the Roof’, a group-wide awards programme to celebrate colleagues who are true ambassadors of our values.
We received over 1,500 nominations for the Raising the Roof scheme in 2017 and 63 colleagues were invited to a gala dinner where their achievements were recognised and celebrated. Lizzie Pollitt, Raising the Roof Winner, said of the event: “I loved attending the Raising the Roof awards dinner. It was great to be recognised in this way and really strengthened the feeling of connection between myself and the Group. For me the best part of the event was hearing other colleagues’ stories. It was really humbling and a reminder of what awesome people we have working with us.” ‘My YBS Group Adventure’ was launched in 2017 to celebrate three core aspects of a colleague's life and career, which were chosen based on what colleagues told us was important to them:
We value diversity and support our colleagues' physical and mental wellbeing.
In 2017 we introduced a new wellbeing programme which aims to help our colleagues stay well and support them when they aren’t. This includes a dedicated ‘My Wellbeing’ section on our intranet, which highlights all the support options available to colleagues, an online platform providing mental health support called Unmind and workshops aiming to improve colleagues’ resilience.
Physical health is important too, that’s why all colleagues have access to a healthcare cash plan to assist with the day-to-day costs of medical care. Colleagues can claim money back to cover costs, such as dental check-ups and prescriptions. And for greater peace of mind they can add their family to the plan too.
We are committed to providing an inclusive working environment and to continue building a balanced workforce that genuinely represents the communities we operate in. We’ve hosted a variety of educational workshops, ranging from a basic introduction to diversity and inclusion to inclusive leadership sessions, and created an inclusive recruitment website adapted for candidates with diverse accessibility needs. We are now working with the National Centre for Diversity, through the Investors in Diversity accreditation process, to understand how well fairness, respect, equality, diversity and inclusion are embedded in the way we operate day to day.