Educ8 have been named as the Best Mid-Sized Company to work for in the whole of the UK, recognised for their exemplary staff satisfaction and consequent workforce engagement.
Economy Minister Vaughan Gething said: “Cultivating a working environment that prioritises happy, motivated and inspired employees is incredibly smart business practice.
“We have a raft of brilliant companies operating in this way across Wales, but Educ8 has consistently shown itself to be a leader in championing staff wellbeing year after year.
Their success is a great advertisement for employee satisfaction to all businesses, big and small, across the UK. I congratulate them on another fantastic achievement.”
This is the 7th, and pinnacle year, that Educ8 has been accredited for its outstanding employee engagement and leadership. Educ8 was founded in 2004 by Group Chairman Colin Tucker in response to skills shortages in the South Wales area and is run with an ethos driven by the values of honesty, integrity, respect and positivity and a passion for ensuring staff reach their full potential.
Colin said: “It is a privilege to have been part of a journey that began 16 years ago, an organisation employing 14 people has evolved into one of the “go to” providers of Apprenticeships. To win this award during a pandemic is particularly satisfying, given the challenges we have all faced. This year’s Best Companies awards refer to “World Class” organisations, and I’d like to recognise the contributions of what I think is a world class Board of Directors. A huge thank you to all our staff, at all levels within Educ8. Thank you for the trust you have shown in us, and for your hard work. Thanks also to all our customers and learners, both past and present, without whom, we wouldn’t have a business.”
Best Companies works with employers across Wales and the wider UK measuring, improving and recognising workforce engagement and satisfaction. With 72% of UK-wide employees stating they would work harder if they were appreciated, and companies with high employee engagement being 21% more profitable, the importance of the Best Companies results cannot be understated.
The board at Educ8 have long identified employee engagement as fundamental to success and key to this has been the exemplary leadership and communication of CEO, Grant Santos.
Grant said: “It is just fantastic to have been voted as the Best Mid-sized Company to Work For in the UK. At Educ8 we are always striving to be the best and I am ecstatic that we have been accredited been awarded both on a Welsh and a UK-wide level. There is no doubt that the community spirit we have grown within Educ8 has had an invaluable effect on our accomplishments as a whole, from employee motivation to the high-quality service we deliver to our employers, learners and communities.”
Throughout what has been a challenging year for many, Educ8 has not only supported employees with an increased benefits package but with an extensive programme of wellbeing initiatives and activities, including the Educ8 choir group and ‘Happy to Chat’ virtual bench which offers 24/7 support for employees.
In October, Educ8 launched one of their most successful wellbeing initiatives, Rejuven8 time, which implements a dedicated slot of time in every employee’s diary to take some time for themselves, away from their screen, each day.
Matthew, an Educ8 employee, shares his experience: “I will always be forever grateful to Educ8. I have never worked for an organisation that cares so much for their staff. I’m not ashamed to say that I found myself in a bad place, struggling with anxiety and I probably was depressed.
“I count myself very fortunate to bean employee of such a values-driven organisation, and I can say from my experiences that Educ8 will support any individual who may find themselves going through a difficult time, we do really have a Gr8 team and I thank all who have helped me over the last 18/24 months.”
A driving force behind the wellbeing programme has been Tracey O’Neill, Educ8’s Head of Human Resources. Tracey said “At Educ8 we have always made sure to champion our employees and their wellbeing. This past year we have taken this engagement to the next level and we are thrilled to have received this recognition as the best company in Wales.”
As well as being pioneers in wellbeing, Educ8 is passionate about the sense of community that their workplace culture offers.
Tracey added: “As we continually look to improve our working practices and employee engagement, we are proud to see our values extend beyond our workplace, to our learners and into our local community.”
The news of the Best Companies top ranking comes at a time that Educ8 have made several announcements, including the recent partnership with the Institute of Directors and the launch of the first Welsh Healthcare Science Apprenticeship Programme in partnership with the NHS.