Greenfields Community Housing

http://www.GreenfieldsCH.org.uk

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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11
Best Company to work for in the UK
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Best Company
to work for

IMPROVING LIVES IS at the heart of Greenfields Community Housing: for residents in the Braintree-based association's 8,100 shared-ownership, leasehold and rented homes, as well as its employees and volunteers. Whether it is their health and wellbeing or professional satisfaction, staff at this mid-size venture are taken care of. Teams are organised into three directorates — housing, property services, and IT, human resources and finance — and career progression is there for those who want it. Employees give Greenfields its top-ranked score of 73% positive for the beneficial training they receive — just one mid-size organisation on our not-for-profit list did better —and feel their job is good for personal growth (78%), both top-five scores. Workplace health champions have organised events such as men's health week, when male employees got “man manuals” and challenged each other in bench-pressing and weightlifting, tallying their results on a Top Gear-style leaderboard. Lunchtime walks, hypnotherapy to stop smoking and a weight-loss programme are offered too, and staff say their health does not suffer due to work (78%). www.greenfieldsch.org.uk

Featured Workplace Factors

Giving Something Back

79% of staff agreed

I am happy with the pay and benefits I receive in this job

Greenfield's have invested £100,000 into ‘Tendring Reuse and Employment Enterprise', or ‘TREE', a charity providing volunteer and work placement opportunities for people in the local community. In July the company's Area Forum in Witham held a Summer Fete for both employees and residents, which raised over £400 for their charity of the year. The annual garden competition and Edible Estates encourages residents to spend more time outside and to get active while being involved in looking after their gardens. Later this month Greenfield's are hosting a coffee and cake morning to encourage members of the community to come and talk about possible work opportunities in local organisations. In aid of Essex Air Ambulance Greenfield's recently organised a Go Yellow Day, where employees were encouraged to wear something yellow and provide only yellow food! The company's Digital Inclusion Co-ordinator runs free sessions to upskill residents with digital tasks, including applying for Universal Credit and searching for employment. Residents can even study for a City and Guilds qualification and borrow a laptop or tablet for home use. Employees can also volunteer to be digi-pals and provide additional support to the coordinator by assisting those attending the sessions. Furthermore Greenfield's can offer learners the opportunity to sit the Entry Level 3 Award and Certificate for IT Users, with 20 residents having already gained this qualification. On top of this, their Positive Engagement Coordinator does outreach work with young people in the community, with the aim of reducing ASB and drug/alcohol abuse. So far 500 people aged 15 – 25 have been involved and using football as an engagement tool the Coordinator has ‘kicked about' on local parks and joined in with games. He's even encouraged them to provide garden maintenance services to vulnerable, elderly and disabled residents. Five people have even worked with our Trades team to develop DIY skills over two solid weeks of work experience.

My Company

87% of staff agreed

This organisation is run on strong values / principles

Despite last year's budget requiring that the company make cost savings of £12.5million by 2020, the decision was made to maintain their Learning and Development budget and continue to invest in employee development. Employees are able to request development at any point during the year, which could be in the form of shadowing, coaching, courses, conferences, roadshows etc. All employees are also invited to apply for funding for a formal qualification once a year, with all applications this year being approved. Greenfield's also run monthly lunch and learn sessions, where either an employee or external guest will discuss a specialist area. Recent topics include CPR training, Dementia Friends, Healthy Eating and Speaking with Impact, as well as other work related topics. These sessions encourage development in a range of areas, as well as providing opportunity for cross-team interaction. One of the most interesting things offered last year was coaching skills workshops for non-managerial employees. Whereas previously this was only offered to managers, this time round various employees from different teams attended the four workshops offered, where they found it helpful to discuss issues with people from different teams that they did not usually work with. One participant even said ‘I can't believe how well coaching works. I've just had a conversation with one of our residents who I was making no progress with. I used coaching and it really worked.'

My Team

85% of staff agreed

This job is good for my own personal growth

Workplace Health Champions organise health and wellbeing activities quarterly for employees to participate in. This year these have included Mental Health Awareness, a Men's Health Week and a ‘Race to Rio' event in aid of the Olympics. During the Mental Health Week an employee ran an afternoon of 30 minute meditation sessions which were well attended. The week also offered posture checks and head and shoulder massages, which were popular among the Customer Services Team. For Men's Health week each male employee received a health check manual for men, written in the style of the Haynes car manuals. Employees also ran a Top Man Challenge, with prizes for all the winners. Using a Top Gear style Leader board men challenged one another to a range of activities, including bench pressing and weight lifting, aiming to be at the top of the leader board. The event was talked about for weeks afterwards. Health Champions organise various other initiatives, for example a six-week weight loss programme, health checks, flu jabs, a running club and even stop smoking hypnotherapy sessions. Following the running club four employees ran a half marathon, raising £1000 for Greenfield's charity of the year. Greenfield's Employee Assistance Programme is available through BUPA and employees can have six face to face or telephone counselling sessions to discuss in confidence any topics concerning them. What's next for Greenfield? Coming up they have a five-week programme focusing on Mental Health that will include Laughing Yoga, a Modern Jive taster session, a ‘lunch and learn' session delivered by an employee discussing their experience with Bipolar Disorder, plus a healthy festive bake sale. The company will also be promoting their Christmas present appeal, where they collect donated Christmas presents which employees then distribute to local residents just before Christmas Eve.

Benefits

Long Service

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

Maternity

Companies offering at least 10 weeks’ full pay or generous alternative.

Pensions

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

List Positions

National Ranking
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11
Best Small Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
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11
Best Mid-Sized Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
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11
Best Large Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
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11
Best Big Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
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11
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