"It's the young at heart approach that is clearly evident at Virgin Mobile, which offers a work hard, play hard ethos that employees find dynamic, vibrant and fun.
Founded in 1999, the company has more than 4m customers and is one of the UK's leading mobile virtual network operator.
Virgin Mobile offers employees a working atmosphere in which they are encouraged to have fun. Many staff members refer to the ""fantastic parties"" which the company regularly holds, and enjoy the firm's young and vibrant culture.
One says: ""Virgin has a unique culture, friendly people, relaxed atmosphere and a fun and cheeky approach to business. It's the best place I have ever worked.""
The firm has a specially appointed V Fun Club, which organises weekend trips to Disneyland Paris and Amsterdam as well as pub lunches and evenings out. The company throws a huge off-site party at Christmas, and Richard Branson opens his house to all Virgin employees, offering fairground rides, a huge stage with live bands and fun for the children. The social outings seem to work. According to our survey, 83% of staff say their team is fun to work with and 85% say they laugh a lot with colleagues, ranking the company 28th and 32nd for fun and laughter respectively out of all 100 best companies.
There is strong leadership from the top, and many employees say they are impressed with the approachability of managers. As well as six-weekly meetings with staff representatives there are regular Q&A sessions involving the whole senior management team during conferences, while managers often walk about the office making themselves available.
Survey statistics show that 83% of employees feel the values and principles of the organisation have been clearly communicated, three-quarters say their manager speaks openly and honestly with them and 73% say their manager shares important information with them, the latter a top 40 score.
With customer service advisers earning £13,000 on average, two-thirds of staff say they are happy with the pay and benefits, putting Virgin just outside the top 40 overall on this issue. And the vast majority, 77%, say they would miss the organisation if they left."
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