Best Places to Work – 2017 study and outcomes released
Great Place to Work Institute has released its annual benchmark study for 2017, Best Places to Work, which showcases the 50 best organisations for employment across three categories – over 1000 employees, over 100 employees and under 100 employees. This year marks the tenth Study of Australia’s best workplaces that Great Place to Work Australia has curated.
The top ranked company on the list for the over 1000 employees category is Mars Australia. Healthcare company Stryker is number one in the over 100 employees category, while Avenue Dental (also healthcare) takes the top spot in the under 100 employees list.
The 2017 study into trends in the workplace reveals that efficiency and innovation are two of the key issues that are top of mind for today’s business leaders. Human capital is now the most employed resource in production, and innovation is its greatest output.
According to Zrinka Lovrencic, managing director of GPTW Australia, “Being a great workplace is no longer seen as ‘nice to have’; today it is imperative to business vitality and success. Leaders at the companies involved in the study know that what is good for the workplace is also good for business, and that being a great workplace and having great employees leads to increased client retention, customer satisfaction, and in turn, a healthier bottom line.”
As the world embarks on the fourth industrial revolution, being able to optimise efficiency is crucial to success and this goes together with the promotion of innovation. In 2017, organisations are employing people to produce solutions to problems that have yet to arise, and developing products we don’t yet know we need. It takes great leadership to foster and promote this type of creativity.
Jim Brodie, divisional director People and Organisation at Mars Australia states, “It’s Mars Australia’s ambition to be a great place to work, so being recognised by the national body is news we’re delighted to share with our associates. It allows us to reflect on the steps we’ve taken to achieve it and to celebrate the impact our associates make every day in creating a working environment that we’re proud of. It also lets the outside world know what kinds of company we are, which we believe helps to increase our ability to attract the best talent into the organisation.”
Fostering a special culture is just part of the Mars DNA. Driven by a desire for long term success, Mars knows that means continuous improvement. It actively seeks feedback from its associates, acts upon it and benchmarks itself against other best companies to provide insights that can make Mars even better. Mentoring is also a large part of its culture and is key to developing leaders and helping encourage new or young associates.
Great leaders know they depend on their company’s human resources to achieve optimal success. They seek feedback from the frontline and enable the collaborative solution.
The dental industry in Australia has undergone immense changes in recent years. An increase in the number of dentists graduating will soon see an oversupply in the profession. Combined with increased cost pressures on dental practices and often poorer workplace cultures and conditions, the net result is a decrease in wages. Yet at Avenue Dental, its purpose is to combat this situation and positively transform dentistry. It is driven to create an outstanding workplace culture to attract, mentor, train and develop the most talented people in the industry. In turn, its talented team members provide its patients with a great dental experience each and every time they visit.
Stephen Dudgeon, principal dentist at Avenue Dental says, “To be recognised by Great Place To Work means that every member of the team has contributed and the recognition directly reflects their own involvement in making Avenue Dental a great workplace.
“For a number of years, we have looked for an award that meant most to the team at Avenue Dental. We have won numerous awards over the years, however none of these awards quite captured the hearts and souls of our team like Great Place To Work.”
Allowing employees to think outside the square, evaluate better ways to achieve goals and proactively arrive at solutions is a process great leaders facilitate. This is an area that healthcare business Stryker is familiar with as it strives to encourage employees to make their own choices. Stryker’s products and services help people live active, satisfying lives by providing world class products and services in healthcare, where patients’ lives potentially hang in the balance. With work being such a huge component of its employee’s lives, it believes that if their people love what they do and enjoy themselves at work, their lives and those around them, are better.
Promoting work/life balance is an important component of today’s great workplaces. Nicki Luther, senior HR business partner at Stryker South Pacific says, “Sometimes we feel like we’re a best kept secret! Many people outside of the medical technology industry have never heard of Stryker, what we do, what we stand for or our strengths-based culture. Recognition as a best workplace allows us to tell our story and share how we contribute to making healthcare and patients’ lives better.”
The 2017 Study was conducted between October 2016 and June 2017. The results represent 60,956 Australian based employees from 150 companies.
Zrinka Lovrencic concludes, “Congratulations to the companies on this year’s 50 Best Places to Work list. We commend the leaders, managers and employees at these companies for their extraordinary efforts they take to sustain great workplace cultures. We hope that this study is an invitation to introspection – a useful tool for all business leaders to think about their company’s strengths and opportunities.”
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