Quick facts

About PHD Group

CLEVER PEOPLE ARE divided into two categories at PHD Group: those whose intelligence makes others feel less so and those who bring out the best in people. Only the latter are hired by the London-based media and communications agency, which was founded in 1990. It makes for a close-knit organisation where colleagues care for each other (an 86% positive score, 10th on our list).

Chief executive officer Daren Rubins is known for his light touch and willingness to roll up his sleeves with his team of 315 staff. The young workforce — almost three-quarters under 34 — have faith in his leadership skills (82%) and find plenty of ways to have fun (87%).

The agency understands the importance of maintaining a healthy work/life balance. The entire team enjoys 27 days of holiday a year and people can buy an additional five days off. A media planner-buyer makes an average of £46,000 a year.

Free breakfast gets everyone together in the mornings and helps a good cause at the same time. For every basket of fruit consumed by hungry employees, the company donates a fruit tree to a project in Africa — and so far more than 2,200 have been planted.

The business also supports Changing Faces, a charity that helps people with a disfigurement, as well as Macmillan Cancer Support and the British Heart Foundation. Employees believe this organisation is run on sound moral principles (83%) and they say that they feel proud to work for it (86%).

www.phdmedia.com


What is it like to work for PHD Group

Leadership
Leadership
PHD’s management team are open, personable and easily accessible to staff. They operate an ‘open door’ policy and are non-hierarchical in their manner. All employees are also updated directly from the senior team at a company meeting once a month. This is the only meeting in the company that never gets cancelled. Employees often feel comfortable discussing either work or personal issues with senior leaders. Permission to fail is part of PHD’s culture and bad or good news is always shared in a very timely manner which truly does instil trust amongst employees. At the top of the agency, the leadership team is the perfect embodiment of PHD’s approach to its talent. If your company’s goal is to create a culture which employs the best people and gives them the opportunity to thrive and become the company leaders of the future, you need to live by it from the top down. Their CEO, Daren Rubins can tell that exact story. Daren joined PHD over sixteen years ago as a Group Media Director and has risen through the organisation to Managing Director in 2007 and then to CEO in 2011, meaning that at the top of the agency leadership team is the perfect embodiment of PHD’s approach to its talent and what it takes to succeed here. His progression to CEO is even taught as a case study at PHD’s parent company’s global management training partnership with the Harvard Business School. Daren leads from the front and there is nothing he would ask of those who work for him that he would not be willing to do himself. He has a glorious lightness of touch which empowers those around him but he’s also happy to get his sleeves rolled up and get stuck in if required.
Personal Growth
Personal Growth
Each employee has access to two paid learning days. PHD realise that finding the time to learn can sometimes be challenging, so employees can use two dedicated days to study at home allowing them more freedom over when and how to fit learning around work. They also offer a learning bursary which gives employees money and the opportunity to learn something non-work related, whether this be street dancing, Arabic lessons, beer brewing or a basic DIY course.
My Team
My Team
In line with PHD’s culture and ethos of the ‘Human Touch’, working collaboratively and face to face interaction between teams is strongly encouraged. Every department holds weekly status meetings so everyone is made aware of important updates. These meetings are vital in ensuring news is communicated quickly and is an opportunity for team members to interact away from their desks. Line managers hold regular catch ups with their people to boost communication. The large majority of their people are very sociable and are often at lunch or drinks together. PHD encourage this as it aids good working relationships across the various departments. They also hold weekly 15-minute update meetings that rotate around the building. These meetings are intended to give everyone brief updates that are relevant to the way they work for clients, provide useful insights and showcase interesting research. After restructuring the teams late last year, PHD had to rethink their internal workstreams leading to revamped briefing and planning processes within PHD. Key speakers explained the new way of work during a dedicated offsite session. Everyone received a pack with printed collateral to re-enforce the learning. As part of their planning process they hold Action Planning sessions, these encourage people to work collaboratively and to be creative by working together as a group. People are selected from different teams to gain a range of insights and experience and it is an opportunity for them to network with people from outside of their normal day to day team.

Learn more about the 8 factors of workplace engagement here

Benefits:

  • Women
    Women

    At least 40% of senior managers are women

  • Holidays
    Holidays

    Companies offering a minimum of 25 days annual leave to all employees

  • Gym
    Gym

    companies offering either free gym/ sports facilities or offering subsidised gym membership for all employees

  • Maternity
    Maternity

    At least 10 weeks’ full pay or generous alternative

  • Development
    Development

    Companies who provide support for non-work related training

Company Statistics

  • Staff Turnover:

    26%

  • UK sites:

    3

  • Staff:

    315

  • Average Age:

    32

  • Male : Female:

    44% / 56%

  • Earning £35,000+:

    56%

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