Wales & West Housing, Winner 2012, Best for Career Progression for Flexible Workers
Wales & West Housing is a small to medium size employer with 341 employees, based in Cardiff. In recent years it has made a significant shift as an organisation from being a command and control culture, to that of one that functions as a flexible system designed to develop individual and organisational performance. The impetus for this change has come through the Chief Executive and Senior Management Team, who have actively encouraged and role-modelled new ways of working and operating to their staff.
A coaching approach was developed to move the organisation away from a target and performance management-based approach. Instead, individuals are encouraged to develop themselves professionally in a way which best suits them and their circumstances. Underpinning this is Wales & West Housing’s commitment to investing in skills and training. Their approach has been to be flexible and supportive of all training and development and they take a view on each individual’s training requirements based on the relevance of the training to the work that an employee does (or wants to do). Thus, those whose training is directly relevant to their work will be given paid time off to study and attend training and course fees will be paid. Those who wish to train for something not directly related to their job may still allowed time off to attend courses etc, but must work the time back.
All staff, regardless of their working arrangements, can access training and professional qualifications and are supported through paying for fees and subscriptions, again regardless of working pattern. Staff are able to access computer training even if their role doesn’t require it, as the organisation views this as part of its commitment and responsibility to develop all of its employees.