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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19
Best Company to work for in the UK
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Best Company
to work for

TWO YEARS AFTER receiving an irate call from a customer upset that Bonmarché was closing its only store on the Isle of Wight, chief executive Beth Butterwick called the woman to invite her to cut the ribbon when a new shop was opened on the island. “We obsess about our customers,” explains Butterwick, revealing that the customer is now a brand ambassador, “and want to surprise and delight them.” The organisation focuses on the 50-plus fashion market and there are four ever-present cardboard cut-outs of Bonmarché-clad customers at the weekly staff meeting at its Wakefield headquarters. The focus on the client is a core value that runs across the business, which achieves its best overall results for the My Manager and My Team factors (both ranking 13th on our list of Best Big Companies). “The meeting gives you the opportunity to see what has been done during the past week and what is on the cards for the next,” says logistics manager Wayne Hemingway, whose team played its part in improving departmental interaction by making a video of the life of a garment. Employees agree that work is fun (80%) and that people go out of their way to help one another (78%). Bonmarché encourages charitable activities (82%, ranking ninth), with head of retail Claire Gebski saying of one initiative: “We hold charity fashion shows and we'll showcase our products with customers as the models, while staff model, too”. A staff-nominated “star colleague” receives £200, a bottle of champagne, and a coveted parking space for a month. Employees say their managers express appreciation for a job well done (74%) and talk openly and honestly with them (76%). www.bonmarche.co.uk

Featured Workplace Factors

Giving Something Back

89% of staff agreed

My organisation encourages charitable activities

The company offers personal coaching utilising an external coach to develop senior managers - Management Development Coach. This programme supports and develops new managers and assistant managers in stores to deliver in their roles through using existing managers as management development coaches combined with a structured training plan.

My Team

87% of staff agreed

My team is fun to work with

They hold a weekly trade meeting where all colleagues from head office and the distribution centre are invited. These are a great way to ensure all colleagues have the opportunity to receive key information directly from the leaders. They are also a great forum to share, and celebrate, successes for example the great charity work colleagues do and contribute to. They also ensure colleagues hear about great new developments in the business, for example new store openings. Key messages are then cascaded to store colleagues via a weekly ‘Trading Post.' This enables Bonmarche to share information with as many people across the company as possible. Annual roadshows are run across the country and include as many of their Colleagues as possible. The 2015 Roadshows were titled ‘Road to Success' and focused on values, strategy, branding and new product development. The aim of the roadshows are to bring colleagues together, share key information, welcome feedback directly from them and have some fun!

My Company

85% of staff agreed

I believe I can make a valuable contribution to the success of this organisation

They hold a weekly trade meeting where all colleagues from head office and the distribution centre are invited. These are a great way to ensure all colleagues have the opportunity to receive key information directly from the leaders. They are also a great forum to share, and celebrate, successes for example the great charity work colleagues do and contribute to. They also ensure colleagues hear about great new developments in the business, for example new store openings. Key messages are then cascaded to store colleagues via a weekly ‘Trading Post.' This enables Bonmarche to share information with as many people across the company as possible. Annual roadshows are run across the country and include as many of their Colleagues as possible. The 2015 Roadshows were titled ‘Road to Success' and focused on values, strategy, branding and new product development. The aim of the roadshows are to bring colleagues together, share key information, welcome feedback directly from them and have some fun!

Benefits

Women in Senior Management

At least 40% of senior managers are women.

List Positions

National Ranking
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19
Best Small Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
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Best Mid-Sized Companies to work for in the UK
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19
Best Large Companies to work for in the UK
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19
Best Big Companies to work for in the UK
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19
Best NFP Organisations to work for in the UK
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