Great place to work
Image: Roman Samborskyi/Shutterstock

How can you make sure your company is a great place to work?

6 Mar 2017

The Great Place to Work results were announced on 22 February. So, what will it take to make sure you’re on next year’s list?

With a fight for the very best talent raging on, it has now become more important than ever for companies to be able to showcase that they are a great place to work.

An accolade that boasts about what a great workplace it is certainly helps.

On 22 February, the Great Place to Work in Ireland 2017 results were announced and Promed, Cisco and Workday took away the top prizes for best small, medium and large places to work respectively.

Liberty IT made the list of best small places to work in Ireland, while AOL made it into the top 10 medium places to work.

When it came to the large places to work, Salesforce and Vodafone made it into the top five, while Version 1 and Intel made it into the top 10 great places to work. Bristol-Myers Squibb and PayPal weren’t too far behind, making it into the top 20.

How are they chosen?

Companies that make the list are more likely to attract the best talent as it is based upon what the current employees say, as well as the companies’ own policies.

The survey given to employees is a trust index survey. “It’s a survey of 58 statements, it’s been established for the last 30 years or so,” said Joseph Benkanoun-Greene, digital communications manager at Great Place to Work. “It’s the same methodology behind the Fortune 100 list.”

Employees are sent an anonymous survey, in which they answer statements about their company using a Likert scale, ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree.

Statements include: ‘Management trusts me to do a good job without looking over my shoulder’, ‘When I look at what we accomplish, I feel a sense of pride’ and ‘Management’s actions match their words’.

How can my organisation become a great place to work?

The survey makes up two-thirds of the overall assessment, with the final third coming from a culture audit. “There are nine practices where we request a submission from the organisation,” said Benkanoun-Greene.

“We recommend that the company puts together an internal team to work on compiling that document,” he said. “We ask them to submit supporting documentation with that.”

Benkanoun-Greene said if a company is submitting its employee handbook and it suggests certain diversity practices, they could also submit videos to support these.

“There were a couple of organisations that won special awards for having specifically innovative practices.”

For example, AOL won a special award for hiring due to their cultural ambassador programme, which created a recruitment process that defined ‘culture fit’.

“Organisations don’t have to create policies as robust as the award winners,” he said. “A successful policy could be something as simple as a shared charitable initiative, an acknowledgement of small wins throughout the company or taking time out to welcome new members to the team.”

Benkanoun-Greene said the key point of the survey process is that companies can’t become a great workplace unless a clear majority of their employees think it is.

“While free food and beanbags can make a company a nice place to work, it won’t make it a great place to work. So, the survey measures aspects like credibility, respect, fairness, pride, and camaraderie.”

Jenny Darmody
By Jenny Darmody

Jenny Darmody became the editor of Silicon Republic in 2023, having worked as the deputy editor since February 2020. When she’s not writing about the science and tech industry, she’s writing short stories and attempting novels. She continuously buys more books than she can read in a lifetime and pretty stationery is her kryptonite. She also believes seagulls to be the root of all evil and her baking is the stuff of legends.

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