Our employees are at the heart of our business and their happiness and wellbeing are extremely important to us.
We recognise that our employees are the key to our success and we continue to retain, engage and develop them at all stages of their careers. Our people are proud to work for us and this is reflected in our excellent employee survey results. In the year to 31 March 2019 our workforce continued to grow and we welcomed 87 new direct employees into the business.
In an average day we have around 1,800 people on our sites or at head office, of which just over 330 are directly employed and the remainder are employed by our subcontractor partners. We have concentrated on refining our recruitment processes, extending our induction procedures for new staff and particularly on the development and wellbeing of every employee.
We continue to cultivate our unique and supportive culture even in periods of change and growth. The success of our culture is evident from our ongoing levels of employee retention and our employee satisfaction survey results. Employee retention is currently 89 per cent, something we are proud of and work very hard to maintain.
Our third annual employee satisfaction survey in 2018 saw overall satisfaction with Telford Homes maintained at 98 per cent with the intention to be working for the Group in 12 months’ time increasing once again to 97 per cent. In line with our commitment to deliver a health and wellbeing strategy we were extremely pleased that 95 per cent of employees agree that Telford Homes care about their health and wellbeing. The result that is truly indicative of how our employees feel about working for us is that 100% would recommend Telford Homes to other people. All of these results reflect how hard we strive to create a great place to work.
2018 Employee survey results
Health and wellbeing
It is widely reported that the construction industry suffers from one of the highest suicides rates, which for some subcontractors’ trades, is 2.7 times higher than the UK average. To coincide with World Mental Health day, Telford Homes ran two highly successful Mental Health Weeks to help raise awareness amongst its staff and its site-based supply chain. Each programme provided support for workers in the industry, to help eradicate the stigma of mental health.
Our dedicated Health and Wellbeing group ran a variety of activities within our offices and construction sites; these included physical and mental wellbeing, mindfulness sessions, yoga and educational activities from the Samaritans, MIND, BUPA and the Lighthouse Club. There were also numerous talks on nutrition and meal planning, in addition to lifestyle, sleep quality and exercise plans.
Site and office staff have access to physical wellbeing plans, that consist of cholesterol, blood pressure, body fat and BMI checks. Health checks are also provided for onsite safety critical workers, such as crane and forklift operators. We have trained 29 (2019:19) mental health first aiders and six dedicated mental health champions, who can listen to employees and provide advice on where to find the best professional support.
Due to the Covid-19 global pandemic, we are even more mindful of its impact on people. Accordingly, we have strengthened our mental health and wellbeing campaigns, to help our people through the prevailing period.
Our Sustainability Director chairs the SCSS Wellbeing Special Interest Group. This a cross-sector built environment group, that will publish a best practice Wellbeing Guide in summer 2020.
Telford Homes Academy
In March 2019 we officially launched the new ‘Telford Homes Academy’ when our first cohort of ‘Budding Managers’ started their development programme. The Academy aims to provide training and development for every career stage, from trainees through to first time managers and then on to senior managers. It will not only support and develop those who aspire to progress, but also drive capability and excellence for everyone at any level within Telford Homes.
The development programmes that make up the Academy run over the course of a year and provide opportunities designed to develop management and leadership capability. Each programme has achieved Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) assured status, certifying an internationally recognised standard of excellence. Business growth will continue to present some fantastic opportunities for our employees to take on new roles and our Academy will ensure they are ready to do that. Our aim is to deliver all of our training through the Academy to achieve consistency for all and to ensure we are providing the required development to drive our growth and support our employees.
In addition to setting up our Academy we have had a busy training year. We delivered 1,182 training sessions, an increase on last year and an average of just over three full days training for each employee. Our ‘Careers Under Construction’ trainee programme now has 34 members (10 per cent of our employees), all of whom are working towards management roles, and 16 of which were recruited in 2018.