Read full interview transcript with Centrica here
PageGroup Case Study
PageGroup is a global recruitment firm that since 1976 had been a confederation of very successful businesses with the reputation of being the best in our industry. Established over 40 years ago in the United Kingdom, we now span 153 offices in 35 countries. We are a leading provider of permanent, contract and temporary recruitment for clerical professionals, qualified professionals and executives.
Through organic growth we have become a FTSE 250 company with more than 5,835 employees globally. We operate a consultative approach to professional recruitment combining local know-how with global expertise, to find the best fit between client and candidate.
Why did you first get involved with Educating Matters?
Over recent years our demographic has shifted significantly and as such, we now have vast numbers of parents working for us. In 2013, we launched Maternity@Page to give enhanced and specific support to our mums-to-be. This was fantastically received but with the increase in dual working parents/adoption/carers/same sex parents we needed and wanted to do more. That led to the launch of Parents@Page in 2015. It was critical for us that our partner for Parents@Page truly understood its purpose and could add significant value to its cause. Rachel Vecht at Educating Matters was therefore the obvious choice, as she is as passionate about her subject as we are about our parents. Her style is relaxed and very engaging which works perfectly. The parenting seminars are purely for our employees to learn about techniques that can help them be better parents so that they can optimise the time they spend with their children.
How many employees typically attend seminars/webinars?
As we have offices all over the UK, the seminars move location to capture a different physical audience, to ensure we include as many people as possible. For those who can’t attend in person, there is the option to follow by webinar. This is option is not only for PageGroup employees UK & globally but their partners too. On average we get a dozen in attendance with a further two dozen dialling in. The largest attendance so far has been 19 in the room and 50 dialling in. Each year we do a survey out to the network to determine the following year’s activity and topics.
What kind of feedback/response do you receive?
Universally positive!! Not only are our employees (and their partners!) blown away that we offer such sessions, their expectations are consistently exceeded too!! Here are just examples of the feedback:
“Brilliant!! Can’t wait for the next one!”
“Anyone with kids should definitely attend”
“Really good. I can’t wait to take the handbook home to show my husband, so we can start using it!”
“Excellent, will definitely do more”
“Thought it was great, really useful. Been doing it for 3days and I have different children!”
“Was brilliant. Keep them coming! Feel like I will become super mum this week!”
“Really good, often pace of life gets in the way, it was really good to step back. Thought Rachel was excellent and her delivery was spot on”
“I practised descriptive praise in the morning mayhem this morning and it worked a treat. My 6 year old was getting ready for school whilst watching TV and when I went in 5 mins later he still only had his boxers on so instead of hurrying him along with instructions I said ‘wow, you’ve already got your boxers on, brilliant Felix’ and he immediately got fully dressed”
“I thought it was brilliant. Really insightful and practical advice and I will take a lot away from it.”
“I found today’s session excellent. It was such an eye opener, and as usual Rachel was brilliant.”
How did you communicate the offering to staff?
We use a multitude of internal communication tools, as we wanted to reach not only our known parents, but of course our unknown parenting population. We used: email; our internal social networking forum Yammer; posters; word of mouth; maternity/paternity letters; onboarding packs.
What do you consider to be the main benefits/impact?
This is exclusively about engagement and retention. There is no commercial gain for PageGroup sending our people to a parenting seminar. We want to recognise the challenges that our parents have and therefore do what we can to offer solutions. If our parents are getting more understanding and support from us as their employer and as a result of these seminars are getting more out of their time with their children, then that should lead to a more engaged parent population, who are performing well because their work/life blend is as they want it. All subjects are decided by our parents’ network, which means they get to hear about what is important to them.
How does it support staff wellbeing and engagement?
Juggling work and family is no mean feat and when the balance isn’t right, it can have major impact on an employee’s wellbeing and engagement. At PageGroup we are focused on doing our bit to help our employee’s find that balance so that they can get the best out of both areas of their life. 1% increased engagement = 4% increase in productivity for 70-80% of work force.
Are there any measurable results?
We take all feedback very seriously and offer all our employees frequent opportunities to ‘have their say’. Many areas of our evolving culture have been created as a result of employees’ feedback. Specific areas that will be monitored are: Parents@Page network numbers; attendance numbers to & feedback from Educating Matters seminars; Global ‘Have Your Say’ Engagement Survey results.
What are your plans for the future based on the information you have gained from working with Educating Matters?
Our parent population is growing and changing all the time, so it will remain critical to heed their input and model the next stage of plans around their requests. As the seminars continue to gather momentum and the following increases, Rachel has said she will write new sessions based on sought after subject matter. I’d be keen to support our growing population of parents with children with learning difficulties.