NewVoiceMedia

NewVoiceMedia

Baskingstoke, UK

www.newvoicemedia.com

Grade: A

SummaryOverwhelming evidence that this is an amazing work environment from turnover of 5%, great opportunities for travel, rapid growth, perks galore, work/life balance, charitable giving, advancement, training and benefits.

Intro: A great place to work

NewVoiceMedia connects businesses and organizations with their customers worldwide, so they can sell more, serve better, and grow faster. It puts clients in control so they can deliver a personalized customer service experience that powers their sales and marketing teams to keep on driving growth.

We’re passionate about the products and services we provide and know that our employees are the driving force behind the company’s impressive and rapid growth. That’s why we keep innovating and improving our employee offering to make sure NewVoiceMedia remains one of the best companies to work for.

We know that hiring, developing and retaining talented and dedicated people is the best way to keep improving what we do. In 2014, our efforts were recognized when we were nominated for one of the top British business awards (The Sunday Times 100 Best Small Companies to work for). A recent staff survey showed that 98 percent of our team members feel they can make a valuable contribution to the company’s success.

  • We value our staff and understand they’re the drivers of strong growth and performance – not just for our company but for our clients too.
  • We invest in training and provide tailor-made learning and development opportunities, helping all staff achieve excellence.
  • We offer top-quartile pay and an attractive benefits package.
  • We promote a good work/life balance through flexible working, home working and using the best collaboration technology.
  • We’re a market leader in our industry, offering true cloud contact center technology.
  • We find out what our people think through quarterly staff surveys and offer 360 feedback for appraisals.
  • We prioritize the well-being of all our people.
  • We offer a fun and stimulating place to work (that’s what our employees say)!

Impact statements: 

  • We promote a good work/life balance through flexible working, home working and using the best collaboration technology.
  • NewVoiceMedia is growing at a phenomenal rate – five times the market rate (according to Gartner).
  • Our dedicated team members have helped the company more than double revenues in just three years (on target to reach $55 million in 2016/17).
  • We have our own internal Learning and Development Academy.
  • Every few months, new and transitioning employees are corralled and flown to the company headquarters in Basingstoke, U.K. for a series of classes. The classes outline virtually all products and provide high-level overviews of different job functions. All employees are taught to understand and pitch the products. Sessions are collaborative and encourage bonding of new employees. During the “camp” employees eat, tour and lodge together. Leave is provided for those wishing to explore London and other nearby cities.
  • We encourage employees to participate in charity work through GivingVoice, an innovative foundation we launched in 2010.
  • We encourage staff to make the workplace as energy efficient as possible, from respecting the ‘lights out’ policy to installing the latest sensor thermostat technology.
  • We work with charitable organizations to formulate business plans.
  • We have a company-wide focus on the well-being of our people – for us, that’s the bottom line. We put this into action through flexible working.

Growing fast

NewVoiceMedia is growing at a phenomenal rate – five times the market rate (according to Gartner). Our dedicated team members have helped the company more than double revenues in just three years (on target to reach $55 million in 2016/17).

Valuing our people

Jonathan Gale, CEO, leads from the front when it comes to building a strong company culture that really allows staff to contribute to the business and drive its success and performance:

“I’m very proud to have built such a strong company culture and team of dedicated, talented staff. Making NewVoiceMedia a fun and stimulating place to work is a core part of our strategy, and it has helped us to attract high-caliber people around the world. Hiring, developing and retaining the best people in the industry represents a significant source of competitive advantage that helps to differentiate us in our marketplace. I appointed a new global HR and talent director in early 2013 and staff numbers have more than doubled over the past 12 months.

The value we place on our culture and people was emphasized in March 2014 with our entry into The Sunday Times Best Small Companies to work for, where we were also credited with a two-star ‘outstanding’ rating. The staff survey revealed that 94 percent of our employees are excited about the vision and execution of the business, and 98 percent feel they can make a valuable contribution to the success of the organization.”

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Compensation determined by:

The company’s overall performance

The individual team member’s performance

The market rate

NewVoiceMedia’s remuneration is highly competitive, and benchmarked to be in the top quartile for the industry. Staff either benefit from performance-related pay or profit-related pay. Nearly 200 staff have taken advantage of the company’s attractive share option scheme.

Our impressive benefits package is much valued by staff and includes free private health care and critical illness and life assurance. We also provide help with getting to and from work (cars or bikes, through the cycle-to-work scheme). We’re a family-friendly employer, so offer vouchers to help out with childcare costs. And we put 4 percent into a contributory pension scheme, helping our employees look to the future as well as the present.

Advancement Opportunities:

We have our own internal Learning and Development Academy. It’s a cross-company, multi-level innovative initiative that delivers training and coaching for every employee. Staff can benefit from general training as well as training that’s tailored to their individual needs.

We also encourage staff to keep looking outward to develop personally. If someone’s keen to take up an external course, we try to support them where that course brings benefits for the individual as well as for their work and contribution to NewVoiceMedia. In some cases, we can help with course fees and related costs.

Training opportunities:

We offer tailor-made training through our internal Learning and Development Academy

Our induction process for new staff includes a session with the CEO setting out the company’s vision

All new employees or employees transitioning rolls participate in a week long “boot camp.”

We offer ‘360 feedback’ to give a full picture of performance

Every few months, new hires (and laterally transitioning employees) are corralled and flown to the company headquarters in Basingstoke, U.K. There they are placed in a series of classes along with colleagues across business verticals. The classes outline virtually all products and provide high-level overviews of different job functions. All employees are taught to understand and pitch the products. Sessions are collaborative and encourage bonding of new employees. During the “camp” employees eat, tour and lodge together. Leave is provided for those wishing to explore London and other nearby cities.

As part of the induction process, the CEO presents the company’s vision and culture to all new team members. As well as being a good, personal welcome to new staff, this also serves as an initial training opportunity. Jonathan clearly sets out what the company expects of its employees and how they can contribute to its overall growth and success.

Our Learning and Development Academy enables us to provide tailor-made training to individual employees. It also reaffirms our message that, for the company to keep growing and thriving, staff need to grow and thrive too. All team members are expected to spend at least one day a month learning something new.

We also encourage staff to share their new knowledge with other members of their team, cascading knowledge across the organization in this way.

When someone wants to take up an external course, we can provide support and funding if the training opportunity in question offers valuable benefits to the individual staff member, their team and the wider company.

The appraisal process is a key part of staff development, and at NewVoiceMedia we actively encourage ‘360 feedback’ to give the fullest possible picture of employees’ performance. This is a great way to pick up any issue with the internal workings of the company, and to highlight new special training opportunities for team members.

Finally, our company knows how to get the best out of social media and constantly tracks the latest innovations in the industry. That means we’re constantly updating the knowledge base for team members. Our approach to shared learning means that all teams benefit when specific employees (be they software engineers, sales and marketing executives or others) go to industry events, undertake training sessions, or visit other top innovators.

Medical benefits:

Life insurance

Health insurance

We know that for our staff and their families, health is one of the biggest and most important issues. So we provide all staff – whether based in the US or the UK – with life insurance and health insurance. It’s a very competitive package, benchmarked to be in the top quartile of technology companies.

The cycle-to-work scheme that we support encourages staff to adopt a healthier lifestyle by getting exercise as they travel to and from work.

Special accommodations:

We’ve paid relocation expenses (relocating one family to San Francisco from London!)

We’ve offered flexible working

We’ve paid legal expenses (to legally acquire a highly desired sales employee from their existing contract)

NewVoiceMedia has shown that we’re willing to be very accommodating when taking on some of our top hires. We’re open to looking at how best we can provide support to help people make the move over to us. We’ve even offered someone a period of ‘gardening leave’ before they start with us, so they have time to really leave behind their former role and be ready to join our competitive and highly focused team.

Community service/charitable causes:

We encourage employees to participate in charity work through GivingVoice, an innovative foundation we launched in 2010.

We encourage staff to make the workplace as energy efficient as possible, from respecting the ‘lights out’ policy to installing the latest sensor thermostat technology.

We work with charitable organizations to formulate business plans.

We’re also very excited at another new venture; starting this year we’ll be participating in Pledge 1%, whereby each employee gets roughly 20 hours of work time (or equivalent work profits) a year to allocate to charity work or causes.

Similarly, NewVoiceMedia’s GivingVoice foundation is the bedrock of our charitable activities. Through it, we leverage our people, resources and technology to help not-for-profit organizations. GivingVoice works in three ways: through skills-based volunteering, by offering matched funding (of up to $1,400 for activities supporting initiatives dealing with terminal illness), and by directly taking part in fundraising activities (with a focus on helping people with communication difficulties). Employees are entitled to two paid days out of the office a year to carry out voluntary initiatives.

Our staff have been involved in a wide range of community fundraising activities. Some walked a night-time 26.2-mile marathon, raising $7,200 for Cancer Research U.K. Others cycled (25, 50 or 100 miles) in Nelson’s Tour de Test Valley, raising $2,800 for CALM, an organization that works to prevent male suicides. In August 2015, our San Francisco team rose to the challenge and helped build a new home for a deserving local family, raising $1,450 for Habitat for Humanity in the process.

Measuring satisfaction:

Standard working hours are published in the company Handbook. Some team members work a 35-hour week while others work a 37.5-hour week. Employees do sometimes work longer than the standard hours, reflecting the team’s passion and determination to keep fueling NewVoiceMedia’s growth and success.

With so many of the team having shares in the company, there’s an added financial incentive to maintain this fast-growing and hugely successful business.

  • All employees can work flexi-time
  • Managers can work compressed hours or days
  • Team members can make their own schedules where the work tasks allow
  • All employees get between 25 and 28 days’ vacation

Flexi-time is available to all employees, while managers have the option of working compressed hours and days. This means that if a parent has a particular commitment with their families in the afternoon, they would be able to fulfill that commitment and make up the work time on another day.

Many of our team members can make their own schedules. In sales, marketing and consultancy, for example, goals are target-based and not dependent on being in the office. Team members working in customer support and development tend to work fixed schedules to meet customers’ needs, so these team members are often office-based.

Self-organization allows team members to take on many of the functions traditionally performed by managers. The role of the manager is to ensure that these functions are being performed to the best of the team’s ability.

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  • Quarterly staff surveys
  • Chatter

We conduct staff surveys every quarter, with detailed questions on a wide range of employee satisfaction drivers, so that we really know what’s working for our team members (and what’s not).

Our company’s ambitious growth targets and success also rely on the executive team, who are very ‘visible’ to staff. They encourage team members to make comments, observations and suggestions at all times.

Gary Lane, Senior Vice President of HR, is very ‘hands-on’ and spends large parts of his day meeting with team members to ‘take the temperature’ of how team members are feeling. Gary’s takes a keen interest in team members’ knowledge, skills, attitudes, and the way they interact with customers. This certainly helps to create the right culture.

We also use ‘Chatter’ (an online collaboration tool) as a way of sharing ideas and to help monitor performance, changes in systems, and also staff satisfaction.

By offering flexible working and competitive annual leave entitlement

By encouraging team members to use technology to stay on top of family and other social commitments

By giving paid time off to get involved in charitable work

By providing ‘de-stress’ activities in the workplace and healthy foods and snacks

By offering a free counseling service to all employees

We have a company-wide focus on the well-being of our people – for us, that’s the bottom line. We put this into action through flexible working, close interaction between managers and their team members, and a working environment that encourages care for all the team.

As we continue our rapid growth, it’s important that we offer flexible working to attract the best candidates. We recognize that our employees are incredibly committed and sometimes work long hours, so we also encourage people to keep a good work/life balance – using technology (including social media) to keep up with family and social commitments, for example. We don’t take the view that this interferes with work. Instead, we think it helps our people keep a good work/life balance, which helps drive engagement, retention and great results!

State-of-the-art facilities

We make space for relaxation and socializing (de-stress rooms, games spaces)

We monitor noise levels, temperature, light and hygiene to make sure everyone’s comfortable

We have telephone booths for ‘don’t disturb’ calls

We offer free lunches and a wide range of healthy drinks and snacks

Team members have easy access to the exec team and CEO

We know that the physical environment makes a big difference to people’s everyday satisfaction, so we work hard to get it right. We’re always open to new ideas and suggestions from team members too. All of our offices incorporate games and areas to decompress. Ping-pong, corn hole, darts, videogames, giant Jenga, board games, etc., are present in all of our offices, and employees are encouraged to use the games/activities throughout the work day for breaks and team bonding. Away from the cheering of the game rooms, we have private areas for quiet, heads-down work and conferencing.

For each of our offices, we’ve selected new/state of the art spaces and have filled them with the latest tech and ergonomic devices. We have everything from programmable standing/sitting desks (that adjust height based on preference) with dual monitors, to brand new plasma TVs and company issued MacBooks (the latest and best models).

Creative meeting places:

Verbier, Switzerland

Chewton Glen, UK

San Francisco

Sydney, Melbourne and Perth

Singapore

Paris

Copenhagen

Poland

Edinburgh

Our London team has held meetings at the London Mathematical Society and Arsenal soccer stadium. And in July, San Francisco will be hosting a conference at AT&T Park – Home of the SF Giants! But these are just the places we know formal meetings are held. On a day-to-day basis, team members find their own creative places to meet informally and share ideas and information.

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Perks:

Free massages

De-stress rooms with ‘play’ equipment (such as bean bags, table soccer or dart boards)

If things are really getting on top of someone – whether it’s work or family related – we offer a free counselling service.

We keep a fully stocked kitchen packed with all kinds of healthy drinks and snacks to feed those creative minds – from energy drinks, smoothies and vitamin waters to yogurt, fresh eggs, fruit and toast.

The day-to-day is constantly interrupted by spontaneous pizza parties, catered lunches and early-morning breakfast breaks.

If we’re working late nights or are celebrating an achievement, we open up our always-stocked wine or craft beer stash.

Membership of private gym

Membership of Wentworth Golf Club, part of a private health resort

Every year, the best company performers get a week’s holiday at Verbier!

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Fun:

Darts, table soccer, corn hole

One-off fun events to celebrate achievements or attract new candidates

We work hard to promote a fun and creative atmosphere across the company, where everyone is motivated to perform to their best. Our CEO is very engaged with all team members. He takes time to get to know new people and makes time to have fun with them.

Our executive team are always sure to tell team members how much they and the company appreciates their hard work, and regularly celebrate special efforts or achievements. Like at the end of Dreamforce week (for which we are a sponsor), we organized a fun and relaxing party in the office to thank everyone who had worked so hard to put our sponsorship together.

Thanks to the atmosphere we create, fun is a daily feature of our workplace. There’s always a game of ping pong or darts going on, and the occasional game of corn hole!

We also apply our fun, innovative company culture to recruitment. We wanted to find an unconventional way to showcase our office to potential candidates. So we turned our humble San Francisco workplace into a traditional English pub for the day – complete with bar games, soccer memorabilia and plenty of Union Jack flags!

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Collaboration tools:

SuMo performance management system (sales teams)

Salesforce Chatter and Microsoft Lync

Social media (blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and YouTube)

We’ve adopted social technologies to build strong connections not just with customers, but to enable our team members to collaborate more effectively internally. We work closely with Salesforce, who promote the social business, and have adopted this way of working.

We strive to build a community of influencers and thought leaders, so we encourage staff to actively engage with colleagues and stakeholders through social media, including blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube.

Our team members use the best technology tools such as Salesforce Chatter and Microsoft Lync for internal communications. They’re invited to share ideas, tell us about team and/or individual achievements, and give feedback on company initiatives. We focus on innovation, so are always trying to improve the speed of our communications across the globe and across different time zones.

Our own technology enables team members to collaborate effectively wherever they are – whether they’re working from home, at the office, or traveling between sites. This improves team members’ satisfaction and reduces time lost due to being on the move.

The SuMo performance management system gives our top-performing sales people points for meeting targets, and is a fun way to drive healthy competition.

We score highly when it comes to team members’ satisfaction. 93 percent of staff say they’d recommend working for NewVoiceMedia to a friend. We also achieved near 100 percent ratings (4.9 out of 5) on a list of technology businesses with head offices in the UK (compiled by Business Insider and Glassdoor).

How corporate vision is communicated:

Through the induction process for new staff

Through regular meetings and briefings

Through the executive team being ‘visible’ and easily accessible to team members

When new people join our team, our CEO, Jonathan, holds a session to present the vision and culture of the company. Although this is part of the induction process, it’s also a training opportunity. Jonathan clearly sets out what NewVoiceMedia expects of its team members and how they can contribute to the company’s overall growth and success.

The executive team are very ‘visible’ and accessible to staff on a day-to-day basis. Putting the company culture into practice, they constantly encourage team members to meet their goals and objectives to support the corporate vision, and to be the best they can be.

Diversity:

NewVoicemedia selects the best people for each role regardless of gender, race, religion, sexual identity, or other social factors. We are an ethical and open employer that welcomes all applicants without discrimination.

Gary and his HR team use a tool we have developed internally to recruit the best people. TECIE – Talent, Enthusiasm, Cultural alignment, Intelligence and Education – prioritizes recruitment decisions to draw in people who will thrive in this fast-growing and fast-changing environment.

Using Chatter means we don’t ‘lose’ any team members who may not be working for some time, whether due to sickness or maternity/paternity leave. This means people still feel very much a part of the company even though they may be away from the office.

If team members have been away from work for some time, HR make sure they receive support upon returning to the workplace to smoothly get back into day-to-day activities. They arrange for regular updates about new technology, customers and product releases to get the team member back up to speed quickly.

NewVoicemedia selects the best contractors to work with to meet our business requirements. We consider all potential contractors without discrimination.

Empowering employees:

Self-organization allows team members to take on many of the functions traditionally performed by managers. The role of the manager is to ensure that these functions are being performed to the best of the team’s ability. Managers use the career planning framework to help their team members determine their long-term direction and thus the support they need to get there. This is reviewed at least monthly during regular one-to-ones.

Regular ShipIt days are one way of empowering the team to share their opinions, ideas and creativity in a friendly and welcoming setting. It ultimately leads to greater innovation, moving the company forward towards our ambitious goals.

Managers use regular one-to-ones with individual team members to find out if they need anything else to be effective in their role and to thrive within the company. Managers ensure that teams hold regular retrospective sessions where the team focus on how things can be improved.

As we’re in such a fast-changing industry and environment, we use a collaboration tool called Chatter to update all team members about special recognition for the achievements of an individual or team. We also use a range of social media as well as traditional channels for communicating success and recognition (e.x. Email).

Chatter

Social media

Traditional channels

Teamwork:

Off-site briefings every quarter, hosted by the CEO

Monthly inductions and informal lunches for sharing of ideas and teambuilding

ShipIt days

We hold off-site company briefings every quarter, hosted by Jonathan, to update team members on past events, sales targets, and our focus for the next quarter. We hold monthly inductions and regular impromptu lunches to promote team-bonding and sharing of ideas.

ShipIt days empower team members to share their ideas in a friendly and welcoming setting. They’re a fun way to feed innovation and increase morale for everyone involved.

Managers hold regular review sessions with their team where they look at how things can work better. They hold daily “scrum” meetings to check that their team is suitably equipped for their immediate tasks.

Managers use the career planning framework to help their team members determine their long-term direction and identify what support they need to get there. This is reviewed at least monthly during regular one-to-ones.

Ensuring well-being:

By promoting a good work/life balance

By offering free counselling to all team members

By offering flexible working or home working to meet childcare or other family commitments

By giving people regular opportunities to express their creativity and contribute ideas for how we can do things better

By offering gym membership and golf club membership

By organizing lots of fun social events

By promoting an organizational culture that values its staff and their families

Jonathan, our CEO, is an evangelical leader who engages easily with people at all levels, and truly believes the company is bigger than the sum of its parts.

NewVoiceMedia promotes a good work/life balance, offering flexible work and home work when people need so they can meet important family and social commitments.

We encourage people to lead active and healthy lives, through free gym membership, golf club membership, and a cycle-to-work scheme. We provide ‘de-stress’ activities and spaces if things are beginning to get on top of people. We offer free counseling to any team member that needs extra support.

We regularly give team members the chance to contribute their creativity and ideas (e.x. ShipIt).

In the past year, Jonathan has brought all our team members together for some fun social events to celebrate what they and the company have achieved. These have included:

The company Christmas party

A summer BBQ

A quiz night

The world-famous Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

A local Octoberfest event

Longevity:

Staff turnover is less than 5 percent

Key managers have been with the company for between 5 and 15 years

Longevity can be hard to achieve in a technology company that is growing rapidly. But not so for NewVoiceMedia, where overall staff turnover is less than 5 percent. Retention rates are also impressive for managers. Ashley Unitt, our Chief Technical Officer, has been with us for an amazing 13 years. Jonathan, our CEO, has been with us for 5 years now.

Our company was recognized by Forbes in 2015 as the world’s 11th top cloud start-up, serving customers in 128 countries. Team members and managers feel inspired about where we, as a company, are heading, and want to stay a part of it.

Our impressive retention rates are evidenced in recent staff surveys:

  • 84 percent  of team members felt positively challenged by their job.
  • 87 percent  wouldn’t leave tomorrow if they had another job offer.

Closing company statements: NewVoiceMedia has a reputation for being a brilliant company – a global market leader in our field – with great prospects and ambitions.

What better recommendation as to why the best people should join us that what our existing team members say:

  • "A fun, fast-paced company, which gives you big responsibility right from the start"
  • “The best place I have ever worked”

Staff surveys consistently show we’re getting things right when it comes to offering a rewarding and attractive place to work.

  • 94 percent of team members say they’re excited about the direction and vision of the company
  • 98 percent feel they can make a valuable contribution to the company’s success

Finally, the best people will always want to be part of a winning team. NewVoiceMedia has received numerous nominations and awards in recognition of our outstanding achievements in such a short space of time. These include the UK’s Future Fifty Class of 2016, the Stevie Awards, The Sunday Times 100 Best Small Companies to work for and fastest-growing tech firms, and listed by Forbes last year as the 11th top cloud start-up.

Back to the entire list of TMCnet 2016 Tech Culture Award winners.

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