Call company is among 'best to work for'

A SUFFOLK call centre and a north Essex law firm are among those celebrating after making it on to a prestigious list of the best UK companies to work for.

A SUFFOLK call centre and a north Essex law firm are among those celebrating after making it on to a prestigious list of the best UK companies to work for.

The Sunday Times Best 100 Companies lists Ipswich-based Call Connection in 54th place, and Colchester and London based Linklaters at number 93.

Call Connection was also ranked first for the percentage of its workforce happy with their pay and benefits with a score of 89.4%.

Edward Jones, a financial services company with offices in Suffolk and north Essex, surged up the rankings to take second spot in the list.

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Accountancy firm BDO Stoy Hayward, which is based in London but has offices in East Anglia, came in 62nd, and law firm Mills & Reeve, which has offices in Cambridge and Norwich as well as Birmingham and London, reached number 68 in the list.

Cambridgeshire-based property consultants Bidwells came 97th.

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Top of the Best 100 Companies (medium-sized) was domestic central heating firm Heat, number one in the Best Big 20 Companies was KPMG and the Best Small or Medium-Sized Company was debt counselling charity Christians Against Poverty.

They beat off competition from 865 other organisations to walk away with the top prizes, which were announced by BBC newsreader Fiona Bruce at a glittering awards ceremony in London last week.

Call Connection, last year's EADT Anglian Business Awards' Business of the Year, said getting into the rankings again, when a record number of more than 800 companies entered, was “just brilliant”.

More than four fifths of Call Connection staff earn between £15,000 and £25,000, and can get subsidised bus travel and car parking, free gym membership and private medial insurance. They can also enjoy up to £550-worth of dental and optical treatment and other therapies, such as acupuncture.

Call Connection managing director Graeme Kalbraier said it was the second year running the firm had achieved a Top100 list ranking and had again ranked first for in the “fair deal” category.

“It is just a brilliant result to come so high again, and we are the only company in the list from Suffolk. It is a credit to our managers and supervisors that the staff think so highly of our company as a place to work, and I am very proud of our achievements. This fantastic accolade sets us up for a great year,” he said.

“For the second year running our company topped this list for pay and benefits, but we also came in the top 10 nationwide for having fun at work. That is just as important, because happy people are better employees.”

Linklaters, which advises businesses, banks and governments across the world was described in the listing as “rigorously fair” with its 2,464 staff based in London and Colchester.

They enjoy an “extraordinary array” of benefits and competitive pay packets, it said. Eighty-four per cent of its staff are proud to work for it, and about two-fifths earn more than £55,000 a year.

Everyone has profit-related pay, private healthcare including families and critical illness and life assurance cover. They also enjoy a concierge service, free gym, subsidised restaurant open all hours and services such as a beauty salon, dentist and physiotherapist.

The Sunday Times Best 20 Big Companies were named as:

1 KPMG (financial)

2 Britannia Building Society (financial)

3 Goldman Sachs (financial)

4 Sytner Group (retail)

5 Ernst & Young (financial)

6 O2 (communications)

7 American Express Services Europe (financial)

8 Mott MacDonald (engineering)

9 Morgan Stanley UK (financial)

10 RBS Retail Banking (financial)

11 PricewaterhouseCoopers (financial)

12 Deloitte (financial)

13 Atkins (engineering)

14 Marriott Hotels International (hospitality)

15 Bourne Leisure (hospitality)

16 Mouchel (services)

17 Vodafone UK (communications)

18 Mothercare (retail)

19 Axa (financial)

20 Deutsche Bank (financial)

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