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Published: 2002-01-29 00:00:00

Environment Waikato staff rate their organisation amongst the top 21 places to work in New Zealand.

In the largest survey of its kind, business magazine Unlimited asked 6927 employees from 87 companies, online and in confidence, about their workplaces for its Best Places to Work survey.

Environment Waikato’s staff responses put the Council in 17th place.

Amongst the things that made it a good place to work were:

  • Working for a successful organisation that made a positive difference to the environment.
  • Plenty of opportunities to develop strengths and learn new skills.
  • Strong teamwork and supportive co-workers.
  • Flexible work practices.
  • Challenging work.
  • Great social and sporting connections – two bands and prize winning dragon boaters.

Chief Executive Barry Harris said Environment Waikato would never be able to achieve its gains without the people who worked there.

“They truly are our biggest asset. We can’t offer extensive benefits like commercial organisations but we can and do provide a positive work environment, strong staff development and plenty of fun.”

So what makes a great workplace, according to the survey?

In addition to the rankings, analysis of the survey database carried out by John Robertson and Associates pinpointed six factors - ‘key drivers’ - which had the most significant influence on whether an organisation was regarded as a great place to work. They were:

  • Fun – having “a fun place work” was six times more important than “confidence in your leadership” and nine times greater than “pay and benefits”.
  • Pride in the organisation.
  • Management performance – the biggest differences between bottom and top performers was the perception of management performance.
  • Caring – was the company more than just superficial in its care for employees?
  • Pay and benefits were fair.
  • Company success – when the company was winning, employees felt happier.

Other top performers in the survey included BT Funds Management, Microsoft, Holmes Consulting Group, GlaxoSmithKline, WEL Networks, AIM Insurance, McDonald’s, Xtra, Lion Breweries, Waikato District Council, United Airlines and Toyota.