Hot on the heels of a third accreditation as one of the ‘Best 100 Companies to Work For’ in the UK as recognised by The Sunday Times, Glenn Jackson of Moneypenny, offers his thoughts on just what makes for a happy workplace.
Endorsed by the Law Society and now handling telephone calls for more than 700 law firms, Moneypenny is well known in the sector. From day one our founders, brother and sister team Rachel Clacher and Ed Reeves set about creating a company people would want to work for and a workplace people would want to work in. The management of Moneypenny has always been carried out in a relaxed, informal and mutually respectful way and we are very proud to have our very first employee still working for us 13 years on.
From humble beginnings the company has grown to a workforce now of 280, handling more than 8 million calls a year for more than 6,000 clients from sole traders to multi national corporations. As we’ve grown though, initiatives have been developed that maintain the essence of those early days, creating the relaxed, open, hard-working and unique ‘family feel’ the company has today. We recruit people as much for their attitude as their ability and our staff turnover is negligible.
As so often in everyday life, many times it’s about the small things. The Moneypenny offices are colourful places with cheerful curtains and bright airy rooms while the ‘playroom’ offers affordable food and drink and a large relaxation space. Work stations are adorned with orange and purple flowers – currency with a nominal value of £10, given out to recognise good performance and saved up until such time as a team can afford to do something special together such as a night out or a pamper session. Communication plays a huge part in people feeling happy in their work. Moneypenny’s ’10 Commandments’ acknowledge the extraordinary efforts employees go to on a daily basis for our clients while company-wide meetings are an important arena for sharing business information. On a lighter note ‘The Khazi Times’ posted on toilet doors and notices on lunch tables are fun and informal ways of disseminating core values and company news quickly and easily.
Ours is very much a culture of praise and respect although we will be the first to be critical of ourselves and seek to improve. One of our underpinning company values is that we each have humility and never assume success and this is important. We present awards for good ideas to acknowledge our employees’ commitment to our principles in any sphere of work or life at Moneypenny and we dedicate a parking space to employees who have worked for Moneypenny for 10 years or more.
What’s nice is that Ed and Rachel are just as likely today as they were in the beginning to be clearing the tables in the Playroom or making sure a new PA knows their way around. Their approach has always been that ‘people matter’ and to ‘treat others as you would want to be treated yourself’. This has permeated the whole company and is shared by all senior managers: every door is open and no-one is too proud to put on a brew. We recognise non-absence and try to do nice things on special days like Valentine’s Day. If it’s a sunny summer’s day don’t be surprised if a Mr Whippy van magically appears in the car park for everyone to have a free ’99’ on Moneypenny!
Mums on maternity leave are encouraged to come into Moneypenny with their new babies which often results in the playroom being full of prams and bottles! We find that this removes any apprehension about coming ‘back to the office’ and also allows the rest of the team to share in the happy events going on in personal lives. Team building at Moneypenny largely revolves around the efforts we make throughout the year to do our bit for charity. We are always up to something and have great fun while our chosen charities benefit in the process so it’s a win-win all round. A happy workplace not only makes business sense but is vital for overall wellbeing as let’s face it during a working week we spend more waking hours with our work colleagues than we do with our own families!
For more information on Moneypenny’s services or to take advantage of a free trial call 0800 0199 944 or visit www.moneypenny.co.uk