About Calanna Whole Health Pharmacy

Calanna Whole Health Pharmacy is a family owned and run pharmacy chain with 11 store locations across Queensland and two offices. Group Team Leader Kelly Williams says the company values — confidence, excellence, honesty, integrity, loyalty, and respect — reflect their attitude towards health and wellbeing, which they focus on with their customers and their staff. Kelly also says they “really want to be leading the way” in the industry, with things like robotic dispensing machines, a voice recognition training platform, and constantly looking for other innovative improvements to the business.

No. of employees








Engagement with the platform

Within 9 months of launch


Activation rate


Recognitions sent


Rewards sent


The majority of Calanna Whole Health Pharmacy employees work in a customer-facing, retail environment, and sometimes it can be too easy to get caught up in the day-to-day and lose sight of the bigger picture. The nature of the pharmacy work means employees are regularly helping customers to greatly improve their quality of life, or manage and improve their health and wellbeing. The positivity of this can get overshadowed by a rogue customer, and Kelly wanted to find a culture-focused solution that helped employees concentrate on the positives.

“We want to make sure that they're healthy, that they're enjoying their job, and remembering the importance they have in pharmacy. I think when you're doing something day in, day out, you often forget the difference that you do make in someone's life. We wanted to try and change that culture, instead of focusing on the negatives or a bad customer experience, focusing on the positive and the big picture.”

In addition to this, Kelly has an aspiration to be an employer of choice. She explained that there’s a skill shortage in pharmacy, and so recruitment is tough for all businesses in the industry. Calanna Whole Health Pharmacy has great retention with their employees, with many employees at or reaching the 10-year milestone.

Kelly has a great attitude when it comes to how meaningful the workplace can be, “Work can be a bit of a break for people. Everyone's got stuff going on outside of work, so for work to be their safe place where they can focus on doing something special and making a difference in the community is really great.”


“We were looking for a system that bundles everything into one,” says Kelly, and this is what led her to selecting Perkbox. The team uses Perkbox as a central hub for recognition, reward, perks, company benefits, and communications like their company newsletter and training modules. “I want it to be that one spot where people who aren't sure where to find something can go to find the information.”

Having the company values stored in Perkbox and tagged on rewards and recognition has “been really powerful for the team”, as although the team was aware of the values, they weren’t tangibly written down or called back to during the day-to-day.

The team has an incredible 87.5% activation rate, and amongst the 128 employees, over 770 recognitions have been sent within just nine months. Managers and the senior leadership have sent over 225 rewards, and over 80 polls have allowed employees to shout out their peers.

Kelly attributes their high engagement on the platform to having strong buy-in from leadership and introducing Perkbox to new employees as part of their inductions. For the launch of Perkbox, Matthew Calanna, one of the owners, filmed a video to introduce Perkbox. They also shared teasers, and celebrated the day with customised cupcakes and cookies — “That created fun. I'm really happy with how many people we've got signed up.”

Recognising the team and saving admin time

The store team leaders are responsible for driving the use of Recognition amongst their teams. Managers are encouraged to recognise team members at the beginning of each week, both based on KPI achievements like loyalty sign ups, as well as good behaviour and sharing positive customer comments. Each month they run a poll centred around one of the company values.

The rewards on the platform have been a time saver for our administration team. All team rewards are now being processed through Perkbox, where previously physical gift vouchers would be bought in store.

Becoming an employer of choice

To build towards being an employer of choice, Kelly introduces the benefits and recognition system at the interview stage,“it definitely does add value when you're talking to an interviewee.” The conversation carries over into induction, with a dedicated section to explain how Perkbox acts as an information hub. “For a new team member, it's been really great to show it to them and say ‘just go to the Perkbox platform and it will show you everything’. For a new team member, I feel like it would be quite exciting and I see the change when doing an induction, now with Perkbox they're like ‘oh wow, that's really cool’.”

The business is building its reputation as technologically innovative, with the likes of the robotic dispenser, but it also wants to be an industry leader in employee experience. That’s where the 160+ benefits and perks on the platform come in.

“Having these extra benefits is just a reminder that we are a pharmacy that's doing something a little bit different. It's nice to hear that people have used the perks and how much they've saved, it reinforces why they like to work at Calanna.”

62.5% of the team have redeemed 650 perks between them. Over $21,000 has been saved by employees, and their favourite perks include groceries, takeaway delivery, technology, and online workouts.

Positive culture change

The biggest result has been the culture change. Kelly wanted the team to focus more on the positives in their day, and they’ve reported back with a huge shift in perspective.

“I've had staff say to me they give recognition on Perkbox but it's also made them do it more face-to-face because it's more front of mind. That was really nice to hear. People have said they've forgotten to thank a team member at the end of a shift, and usually most people wouldn't send that colleague a text message to say thanks, but with Perkbox they're getting on after a shift and recognising them. Above all, that's what we want for our culture, it's really important to us.”

Positive customer feedback left in online surveys are also dispersed to the team through Recognition, “It's been really nice to have Perkbox, it's started a domino effect. We're fueling that positive reinforcement.”

Other HR initiatives

Over the past 12 months, Kelly says the business has undergone a lot of change and improvements. The business structure was reviewed to ensure roles and responsibilities were clarified, and they held a team leader conference day for the first time. They also focused on keeping their team (and customers!) healthy and looked after during the pandemic.

Kelly is now focused on building processes for staff reviews and continuing to build the positive culture.

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