A production company, a retail/furniture store and a media company have topped the list of ‘great’ workplaces for women in the UAE, according to a recent report by the Great Places to Work Institute, UAE (GPTW UAE).
The survey also listed a general top ten ‘Great Places to Work’ as well as the top two places to work for Emiratis this year.
But back to the women’s list.
GE, a manufacturing and production company, is the number one company this year 2012, with the company’s Women’s Affinity Group bolstering its fair work environment policies.
At second place is UAE-borne furniture store THE One. About 40 percent of its managers and executive managers are female.
Third on the list is the Omnicom Media Group MENA (OMG MENA). According to the list, OMG MENA’s maternity leave policies allows for women to be automatically included in salary changes and bonuses while they are away.
GPTW UAE is a part of a global research, training and consultancy firm that recognises the best workplaces in over 45 countries worldwide. The annual benchmarking study – which assesses the level of credibility, respect, fairness, pride and camaraderie within an organisation – forms part of the world’s largest employee survey. Most of a company’s score (two-thirds) is based on the confidential feedback of their staff, with an audit of management and HR practices by the Institute comprising the remainder of the score.
As for the top companies for Emiratis in 2012, GPTW UAE lists GE again as the top employer, having developed strong relationships with universities to build a steady talent pipeline and to offer leadership development programmes.
The other company on the list is PepsiCo, which exhibited a strong offering in coaching and mentoring as well as career guidance and counseling.
And of course there’s the general Top Ten list of great places to work in the UAE.
Topping the list is FedEx, which swaps its second place ranking last year with Microsoft who was on top of the list last year and is now in second rank.
FedEx’s Purple Promise Award recognizes a team member who goes above and beyond their duties has contributed to the companies leading result on the list.
Here’s the rest of the complete list of companies and GPTW UAE’s explanation on what makes these companies great:
1 – FedEX
Fed Ex’s P-S-P or “people-service-profit” philosophy guides all of their efforts. To thank employees who exemplify PSP, it uses the Purple Promise Award (PPA) which recognizes a team member who goes beyond the typical expectations for his or her job to ensure the customer’s needs are met. Sometimes the individual’s effort requires the assistance of coworkers. In such cases, more than one employee may receive a Purple Promise Award for the same endeavor.
2 – Microsoft Gulf
While Microsoft has a business focused culture, it also works to create a sense of work/life balance. To that end, it introduced across multiple teams & businesses within Gulf the idea of having a visible Work-Life Balance Charter that the whole team prepares and signs together. This sets the principles that the team feels would assist in raising awareness of some of the key issues impacting an individual’s work/life balance.
3 – Marriot
Employees at Marriott benefit from a culture of appreciation. As an example, a Certificate of Excellence comes in the name of the associate from the Corporate Headquarters in Washington DC, and signed by the Company Co-Founder J. Willard Marriott, if an associate receives a thank you note from a customer on excellent service.
4 – PepsiCo Asia Middle Eat & Africa
Employees at PepsiCo benefit during welcoming from an assigned “functional onboarding coach” and a “culture coach.” These two mentors help the new employee adjust to the company and its culture.
5 – THE One
At THE One, employees are invited to participate in the organization’s community involvement efforts. THE One set up THE Onederworld – a Sustainable Village Community programme with balanced quality Education at its heart. Presently, six classrooms of a brand new school have been built in the Pimbiniet community in Kenya in conjunction with Free The Children.
6 – OmnicomMediaGroup MENA
The Circle of Excellence is the OMG forum for thinking “outside the box”. It is championed by a senior and provides a confidential forum in which to brainstorm solutions to challenges in business, personal and family life for themselves and on behalf of their colleagues. Participants are asked to share their commitment to maintaining a life-long focus on progress toward their long and short-term goals.
7 – Merck UAE
Effective communication is important to Merck UAE. It developed an “Employee Council” where every 15 employees elect one member to be their voice to senior managers. The employee council meets directly with the managing director of the organization, the HR director and the VP of the region. In this meeting, all issues are discussed openly and there are no barriers to topics. Direct feedback is given to the employee council who transfer the message back and answer all queries of their respective teams.
8 – Bayt.com
Bayt works hard at creating an employee-centric culture. In developing employees, for example, it conducts a daily training. These 30 to 40 minutes training sessions are called STARS training and the content is prepared by a baythead and the same content is shared across the offices each day.
9 – Dulsco
Dulsco actively listens to employees. Its open door and ‘open office’ model facilitates two way communication, especially down-up, and it also has Suggestion Boxes across every location/department to encourage suggestions through awards and recognition. The GPTW employee satisfaction survey is conducted each year to understand the areas of strengths and weaknesses and to understand how it fairs against other companies. The results are shared with the management and plans are designed for improvement in the following year. Results are announced to the entire organization along with the improvement plans.
10 – EMC
EMC works hard to provide a caring culture, going beyond what is required. For example, it grants paternity leave, marriage leave, compassionate leave, even though it is not required to do so by labor law. And it grants public holidays in excess of government announcements.
February 8, 2012