Event news – Awards deadline draws near

Most effective use of an international strategy
Winner 2004: Vanco V:Choice
Entered by Thomsons Online Benefits
Vanco claimed to have introduced the first online international and multi- currency flexible benefits programme across eight countries simultaneously.

What most impressed the judges, however, was the cost effectiveness of doing this on a budget of only £30,000.

The solution was needed after IT company Vanco expanded internationally and introduced different remuneration packages in each country. Communication and admin problems ensued across eight countries and Vanco was initially told that an international solution was not possible within the short time available.

However, it found a provider that built and tested a multiple currency online solution to meet requirements within five months. Following the implementation of the programme, Vanco ran an employee survey which found that 85% of employees were happy with the new system and that 60% also thought it made them feel more positive about Vanco. More than two-thirds rated the quality of benefits on offer as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.

The most proactive use of group risk and rehabilitation benefits
Winner 2004: Lloyds TSB Reasonable Adjustment Absence Programme
The judges felt that this entry should win because Lloyds TSB was doing something to solve a problem that faces most UK companies. It was felt that employers in the UK have a long way to go when it comes to rehabilitating staff back to work, so they wanted to applaud what the bank had done.

Lloyds TSB had listened to all stakeholders, but in particular to its disabled staff. It aimed not only to meet its legal obligations, but also to provide suitable support for its disabled staff.

It also chose its strategic partners to match its goals – including Churchill & Friend, which is run and staffed primarily by disabled people. Lloyds TSB ensured that its workforce as a whole feel responsible for supporting the needs of disabled people, embedding the positive management of disability in the day- to-day work of the organisation.

At the time of entering the awards, the bank had more than 1,200 employees referred into the process and 72% have been able to continue to work with appropriate reasonable adjustments in place.

Most effective use of financial advice in the workplace Winner 2004: Prudential UK
Planning Pru
A clear winner in this category, Planning Pru went on to win the Grand Prix, selected from all awards entries.

The highest commendation given was that Prudential had created a new sector of employee benefits with its Planning Pru solution. Prudential is the first company to offer all staff a day off for financial planning with back up support and education. Significantly, the judges felt that Prudential’s move towards encouraging the financial education and empowerment was in line with wider financial trends in the UK and with moves being taken by the government. They were also impressed with how it was communicated, saying it trusted employees and treated them like adults.

Prudential did not escape close scrutiny from the judges and some queried whether, as a financial services firm, it should automatically be expected to be good at such initiatives.

However, overwhelmingly, the judges decided that Prudential had surpassed all preconceived expectations.

Calling all benefits providers and consultantsÂ…
If you’ve been working on something exciting with your clients, why not enter them for an award? While the award will be presented to your client, your organisation will be mentioned in all post-event coverage and literature. Not only will you help elevate your client’s profile as a best-practice employer, it will also show you as a provider of award-winning benefits.

You can download details by visiting: http://www.employeebenefits.co.uk/awards