Officially a Very Good
Company to Work For

Officially a Very Good
Company to Work For

Officially an Outstanding
Company to Work For

Officially an Outstanding
Company to Work For

Officially a World Class
Company to Work For

Officially a World Class
Company to Work For

Officially a Good
Company to Work For

Officially a Good
Company to Work For

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Best Company to work for in the UK
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Best Company
to work for

ON VALENTINE'S DAY, the 85 employees of this brand-development and marketing consultancy boarded a bus to a secret location. First stop was a business meeting, then the bus took them to Selfridges, where everybody received a £250 voucher. The firm's strongest area in our table of small companies is My Manager, with a positive score of 82%. The business, which provides marketing insights for clients such as Vodafone, Levi's and Santander, was created by two former Unilever marketing staff on 08.08.88 — “a lucky number if you're Chinese”. It became part of the WPP group in 2001 and has expanded into the global Added Value Group with 23 offices in 13 countries. The original office in Hampton Wick, Surrey, has a predominantly female team and has yet to turn down any request for flexible working. Almost half the staff work flexibly to accommodate family responsibilities or further education. All workers get a month's paid sabbatical every four years (or eight weeks on half pay). One employee says: “I now work a five-day month as I have a medical condition that many employers would be terrified by, or hideous about. Added Value came up trumps and were open to trying something that's not easy to run and was totally new, bang-on for my needs . . . brilliant.” Staff don't feel managers use intimidation to get what they want (89%). The organisation's values include openness and mutual respect, and everyone is treated fairly (81%). All staff members have performance and profit-related pay as well as share options, and roughly half the workforce has been here for more than five years. People don't need to leave to increase their experience, as the firm encourages secondments (20 last year) to offices around the world, as well as periods of six months or more in different UK teams. This ensures departments work well together (79%) and people don't feel the consultancy fails to use all their skills (67%). Added Value has a strong social conscience (88%). Most people got involved with charitable activities last year and the firm matches funds raised up to £200. Staff feel the company's contributions are not based simply on a desire for good publicity (75%) and say it cares about the environment (82%). Employees can use a £300 “mind and body allowance” to take a course or get fit, and there is a new fully-lit bike shed for those who cycle to work.

Featured Workplace Factors

Giving Something Back

100% of staff agreed

My organisation encourages charitable activities

A small team, drawn from all skill levels, set out to inspire and ignite the business to Be the Difference. There's a major shift going on in the world. From closed to open, protected to connected and aware to active. Added Value needed to be a part of this shift. With three motivations; Be active. Because they welcome hard graft, Added Value got the business to commit to two days for each individual to help a charity of their choice. Be generous. Because they want to build lasting partnerships, Added Value committed to work with their charity partners to help with their challenges. Their involvement has been a massive turning point in their ventures. Be Green. Because small actions can make a big difference, Added Value committed to inspiring behavioural change in the office and their personal life. They have work-shopped with DoNation and TEAM UP to help them define their character, mission statement and tone of voice, which gave the junior employees the chance to develop facilitation skills. 2013 has seen them continue their work with Shooting Star Chase by freshening up one of their local charity shops and paint Bollywood inspired posters to decorate their children's hospice. Other activities have included clearing up a local garden for Samaritans, volunteering for the Teddington River Festival, raising £500 for Comic Relief with fancy dress, £235 for East-End Shed, which offers underprivileged kids to attend drama groups and held an in-office barista coffee shop.

My Team

97% of staff agreed

My team is fun to work with

Paul is the Managing Director at Added Value UK. Added Value asked some people to give a few words on his leadership style. “Paul's leadership style is distinctive through being equally focused on both the commerciality of the business as well as developing the creativity. Typically leaders can sway towards one of these attributes but Paul is able to deliver credibly on both and inspire and bring the team along with him. He role models creativity in his work and employee engagement activities and believes delivering creating solutions is the key to our commercial success.” “I think he manages an unusual balance of being a really strong leader – strategic, inspiring, having a clear vision and so on, but who does so in a way that is fun and funny, warm, engaging and approachable.” “He's a family man with strong principles. He believes that some things are more important than work. When you need support he is quick to give it. When you don't he stays out of your way, giving you space and responsibility.” Paul is never shy of saying thank you to the team and always makes sure everyone is included, here's an excerpt from a company wide email at the end of 2012: “Unbelievable year. Mental, but amazing. I just wanted to say that it's been truly brilliant working with such a bunch of talented people all in flying form. It shows what we're capable of and how remarkable we are as a team…”

My Company

97% of staff agreed

My work is an important part of my life

The brand team spent 2 days away in The Kent countryside. "The agenda? Have some fun - they did a vineyard tour, made pizzas – got to know each other, oh and do some work - they did some 2014 planning and developed a new offer to start selling to clients as soon as got back to HQ." The qual team headed into London for a day master class in Analysis Skills. A day of fun energisers like making models of colleagues out of play dough, practising analysis techniques and finished with a well-earned glass of wine. "It was a great session to learn and share ideas. It was also great to be out of the office all together something that doesn't always happen given the life of someone always on fieldwork." "Every month Qual get together for a sharing session. They invite members of other teams to join them to share their recent work or pov on various topics and sometimes have people from outside AV talk to them including hypnosis in research." "After winning a Shine award for their work on the Land Rover account, what better way to spend the winnings than on a night of cocktail flaring and tapas eating. 18 members of the Land Rover account from teams across the business enjoyed a night of cocktail making and drinking followed by dinner. A really fun night and a great reward for all of the hard work on a big and sometimes challenging account."

Benefits

Long Service

Companies where at least 40% of the staff have worked there for more than five years.

Pensions

Companies offering a final salary scheme to all employees, or one in which the employer's contribution is at least 5%.

Private Healthcare

Companies offering private health insurance to all employees.

Women in Senior Management

At least 40% of senior managers are women.

List Positions

National Ranking
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Best Small Companies to work for in the UK
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