Every organization wants to be a best place to work. But what does it take to get there? Fortune writes, “A great place to work is one where employees trust the people they work with, have pride in the work they do, and enjoy the people they work with … and these same qualities—trust, pride, and camaraderie—also fuel business performance.”
One company that knows all about this is Ultimate Software―it’s No. 3 on Fortune’s 2018 100 Best Companies to Work For list.
Julie Dodd is Ultimate Software's chief services officer and has helped to build the people-first culture that supports Ultimate’s success. In her blog post A “People First” Approach to Customer Service, Julie writes, “Employees everywhere know that when they feel part of a family at work, they bring more pride to their job and dedication to their company. When employees feel respected and appreciated, they try harder and give more to take care of their organization’s customers. At Ultimate, we believe that great leaders and cultures directly impact the service those businesses can provide, and when a business believes in its people, its extended family includes its customers.”
So how does an organization build this type of people-first culture? “The true measure of a company is how they treat their lowest-paid employee,” Julie says. “At Ultimate Software, these words—immortalized by [Ultimate Software] CEO Scott Scherr—are quoted and framed above the entryway in our South Florida headquarters. They serve as a reminder for everyone from the C-suite to our newest hires that ‘People First’ is more than our motto. It’s our lifeline. It’s simple, it’s powerful and it’s true. By keeping our culture strong and placing people at the heart of all we do, we’ve received numerous Great Place to Work® recognitions over the years and enjoy an incredible 97 percent employee retention rate. Walk through our hallways and you’ll see smiling faces, homemade treats in the break rooms and donation boxes filled with items for those in need. When ‘People First’ is passed down from the top, it resonates with everyone. The impact is significant.”
She also says that Ultimate Software encourages teamwork and collaboration.
“In our more than 25 years as a ‘People First’ company, we’ve created a culture of collaboration and an atmosphere that thrives on the sharing of ideas, knowledge and experience among our employees—harnessed together through teamwork to spark innovation. Because we believe collaboration and innovation are key for continued success.”
What are you doing to make your organization a best place to work?
Q1. What are the pillars of creating a people-first company culture, and how can HR contribute to building the foundation?
Q2. How does a people-first culture impact employee satisfaction and retention, and how are you putting people first at your organization?
Q3. People-first cultures encourage innovation through teamwork. How are you encouraging greater levels of collaboration at your organization?
Q4. How much of an effect does employee satisfaction have on customer satisfaction, and what are you doing to increase both in your organization?
Q5. How can HR leverage technology (such as AI or natural language processing) to understand more about our employees and improve satisfaction? What technology has been helpful to you?
Q6. How can we position and engage our workforce in a way that makes a positive community impact? What community projects does your organization sponsor?
Q7. Culture starts at the top. How can HR work with the C-suite to ensure that leaders are role models for the cultures they wish to achieve?
Q8. What are some ways we can empower employees to maintain the positive cultures we establish and service our customers well?
Q9: What did you learn at #SHRM18 from a speaker, vendor or fellow attendee that will help you build a people-first culture in your organization?
If you missed this excellent #Nextchat you can read all the tweets here.