East Anglia: Best Employer Eastern Region survey reveals ‘a workforce to be proud of’

BUSINESSES from Suffolk and Essex have dominated the honours in a new initiative to recognise the East of England’s best employers.

Nearly 100 businesses from across the region signed up under the Best Employers Eastern Region campaign which was launched in April, with more than 5,000 employees completing surveys to provide feedback on their employer’s culture and values.

It was organised by regional recruitment company Pure Resourcing Solutions and psychometric testing specialist eras, with each participating company receiving a bespoke report analysing the views of its employees and benchmarking it against its peers.

Awards were also made to recognise outstanding performances in key areas of people management, with separate categories for larger businesses, with more than 50 employees, and smaller organisations, with up to 50 people.

Overall winner of the Small Employer category was Ipswich-based insurance broker Pound Gates which also picked up the category award for Employee Values.

Other winners in the Small Employer category included Southwold-based creative agency Spring (for Innovation), Ipswich-based travel agent Travel Stop (for Customer Focus) and the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity, based in Cambridge (for Vision and Motivation).

The overall award in the Large Employer category went to Chelmsford-based cosmetics company Benefit, which also won the Innovation award.

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Among the other winners were Ipswich-based Jackson Civil Engineering (Customer Focus), infection control specialist Tristel from Snailwell, near Newmarket (Vision and Motivation) and Cambridge-based social housing provider Luminus (Employee Values).

Lynn Walters, director at Pure Resourcing Solutions, said: “We have been delighted with the amazing up-take we have had for this initiative in its inaugural year.

“It has demonstrated the diverse range of successful businesses we have in this region. The survey provided a wealth of valuable feedback which revealed that over two thirds of employees would definitely recommend their workplace,” she added.

Alex Pearce, managing director at eras, added: “Our research found that employees in the East of England are on the whole motivated, keen to develop their skills, feel involved in the business they work in, value their customers and will strive to go the extra mile.

“The eastern region definitely has a workforce to be proud of and it demonstrates a strong focus on customer service, which is arguably a good way to stay afloat in troubled economic times.”

The overall findings of the surveys are being presented at a series of events around the region, including one in Ipswich today at which the guest speakers were Henry Catchpole, who talked about his leadership of pensions company Suffolk Life up to its acquisition by Legal and General, and Alistair Lang, chief executive of regional law firm Birketts, who spoke about its involvement in the Sunday Times Best Companies to Work For listing.

Pure Resourcing Solutions and eras aim to run the Best Employers Eastern Region campaign bi-annually providing the opportunity for even more businesses to get involved in 2014.

Lynn Walters added “One of the key reasons we developed the Best Employers survey, awards and seminars was to be able to share best practice to help businesses in our region to attract and retain talented employees.

“We will be running further events in the future to discuss more of the survey findings and facilitate further discussions about employee engagement.”