"I soon realised that this is no ordinary employer," says Angela McAuliffe, who joined Office Depot in April 2001. “Everybody always seemed so happy — and this is because of the values that the company holds very dear and upholds every day to every customer and employee alike.”
Many staff quote the company’s three guiding principles as justification for their inclusion in 100 Best Companies to Work For. They are: excellence in execution, to make Office Depot a compelling place to work, shop and invest; to provide fanatical customer service; and to have respect for the individual.
Customer service is paramount and 91% of staff (our ninth-best score) say there are strong principles in this company for treating customers well. Strong team support helps to make sure all customers’ needs are met and staff feel truly valued and respected by their manager. Many (77%) say their manager is open and honest and eight out of 10 agree that their manager trusts their judgment.
Office Depot is based in America and has become the world leader in office supplies, operating in 22 countries. The UK business, formed in 1998, has grown considerably over the past year.
Pay and benefits are excellent with good perks and recognition of effort. Some 68% of staff believe they are paid fairly for the work they do compared with people in similar organisations — the ninth-best score in our survey — and 62% feel they are paid fairly compared with their colleagues.
Progression and training are encouraged and everyone receives an average of 30 hours’ skills training each year. There are regular appraisals and training needs are then identified. Almost three-quarters of staff say their manager supports their training needs and more than seven out of 10 feel their manager cares about them as individuals.
All members of the board have come up through the ranks and 7% of staff have been there between 10 and 15 years.
Andy Hirst, category manager, has had a steep career path. He says: “I started in 1990 as a representative in the contact centre. The company has invested tremendously in me and has helped me fulfill my potential. Now I am a category manager responsible for sales of £60m.”
Number of Staff:
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Under 35 to Over 55 Ratio: