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Established in 1989, Meridian Business support has grown from one small office in Altrincham to over 29 locations nationwide. It is now one of the largest independently owned recruitment agencies in the UK.
Despite its size, the company retains a family feel and the wellbeing of its employees is a key priority for the Board. Working at Meridian Business Support is very much about being part of the family. A healthy balance of work and play is important to them, they are a friendly bunch and there are always plenty of social events to enjoy throughout the year such as football tournaments, nights out and fun charity events.
At Meridian, the retention and development of their people is very important and for them it is all about creating the right culture that encourages their people to thrive and do their best. Most importantly, they want their people to love their job and enjoy coming to work every day. With a focus on succession planning, the organisation has an ethos of promoting from within, wherever possible, to ensure that their people get to go for opportunities as they arise.
“We are absolutely delighted to have received our 2 star accreditation from Best Companies. For a people business that truly believes in, supports, and develops our people, to receive this recognition for achieving outstanding levels of employee engagement means the world to us. We have strived to create a culture where all our people feel part of the Meridian family and that everyone, no matter what their role, knows that they contribute to the success of the business. Looking after our people is always our priority but never more so than throughout the challenges of 2020, so to know that our people are engaged and love working for Meridian after such a turbulent year is fantastic! We’re now looking forward to 2021 and building on everything we have achieved so far and making Meridian Business Support an even better place to work.” - Derek Skelton, CEO
The pandemic saw Meridian move very rapidly from being a predominantly office based business to one with the majority of people working from home, particularly at the height of lockdown. The Operations Directors ensured that they maintained regular contact with their managers and arranged daily and weekly virtual team calls so no one felt isolated and could raise any issues or concerns that they had. Whilst the approach is informal, it has been effective as their manager population is engaged, which has been reflected in the overall performance of the business.
Outside of regular virtual team meetings, Meridian Business Support were keen to ensure that employees were connected that the spirit of ‘OneMeridian’ was maintained. This has seen the development of several unofficial groups form across the business that have allowed teams to interact on a fun and less formal basis. One of the most popular initiatives has been the creation of a Whatsapp group, where a daily quiz is held every lunchtime. This has proved a simple yet fun way to bring people and teams together.
Meridian’s CEO regularly asks for feedback and good news stories from around the business, which is shared with everyone. This allows people to still feel connected and informed about what is happening in other areas of the business.
Meridian Business Support launched several initiatives to try and maintain engagement during the pandemic, including allowing their employees two hours a week to run errands and do shopping for family, friends or neighbours. They also allowed their people to take time every week to do something to support their physical or mental wellbeing, as well as providing free flu jabs. The organisation gave those who have worked throughout lockdown additional holiday to be take in 2021, in recognition of all the hard work they have put in. Other initiatives included offering Mental Health Awareness training and Inner Wellness coaching.
Learn more about the 8 factors of workplace engagement here
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