Benefits across borders
Equally important for Open GI is an employee benefits package that works for people in all of their locations, something they were struggling with.
Perkbox was built with this challenge in mind — a truly global app that allows businesses to offer benefits to every employee in every location.
“Our geographical spread means that we need that degree of consistency…Employee benefits are really central to our reward package and prior to Perkbox we had a degree of inconsistency and a lack of transparency around the type of benefits that we were able to provide. That is something Perkbox has most definitely solved for us. It’s given us a great platform and we've got that consistency and transparency built in for all our employees.”
Internal Communications Executive Nick Sturdy believes this aligns perfectly with how the business likes to treat its employees.
“From a culture and engagement perspective, one really important thing we have here at Open GI is ensuring no parts of the business feel alienated from the rest of the company. So the way Perkbox can be applied in Macedonia and Poland as well as the UK means we have that level playing field.”
Uncovering the unsung heroes
Another key part of Open GI’s culture is showing appreciation for great work. Whereas previously this was done by senior leaders and managers, Perkbox’s Celebration hub has enabled them to unlock peer-to-peer recognition. As Hayley explains, this means greater recognition of the company’s unsung heroes.
“In previous schemes, where it's been senior manager or line manager led, it tends to be the more visible examples that you see. Peer-to-peer recognition means we can really see the examples we might not even have awareness of. So it’s a great way to unearth those less visible examples.”
Almost two-thirds of the employee base have engaged with the recognitions, and Nick adds:
“It’s really helping with the culture — employees feel more comfortable in shouting out their colleagues and recognising the great work that a lot of people here do.”
It’s not just about what an employee does though — it’s about how they do it. Celebration hub allows businesses to link their values to recognitions, allowing them to showcase exactly what behaviours they want. This then increases the chances of those behaviours being replicated.
This is particularly important to Open GI, who have an internal programme called My OGI Champions that focuses on the company values — Innovation, Teamwork, Accountability and Trust. The polls functionality also gives employees the chance to have their say, which Hayley finds especially useful.
“The polls on Celebration hub where you can vote for examples of great performance are really good for us, because we can thread our own values through that. It makes sure that we’re always keeping the focus on values and behaviours which we think are just as important as what someone delivers. [Celebration Hub] has been brilliant because it enables us to administer our scheme on something employees are really familiar with.”
Different strokes for different folks
Catering for a variety of employee needs is a challenge for all businesses, especially those with a global presence. It’s why Hayley thinks that Perkbox’s Global Reward tool, which gives employees location-agnostic Reward points, is a key part of the employee experience.
“It’s great that when you give someone a reward…currency isn’t an issue. And they can of course spend their Reward points on something of their own choice, which I think links culturally to the employee experience piece. We know — and I expect lots of other businesses grapple with this too — that because of the changing demographic, people want to feel like they are receiving something with them in mind. So the opportunity to choose something that works for them is really important. That’s something we particularly like about Perkbox.”
Open GI use Perkbox to make rewarding a year-round habit, topped up by larger internal events such as Champions of the Quarter and Employee of the Year. Hayley is also keen to use the platform for all-important end of year rewarding, saying: “With so many great offerings it’s something that we’ll definitely use for the festive season.”
Meanwhile, the 4,000+ deals and discounts on Perks hub are another way to offer employees maximum choice. Open GI employees have collectively saved well over six figures, and Hayley says this part of the platform always receives “really positive feedback”.
Open GI also provides their employees with 40 Flexi points a month, which can be spent on a range of extras, or saved up. Nick has seen first-hand that this appeals to different people.
“There’s quite a few people — including myself — who are saving Flexi points up for something bigger, but even on a monthly basis you can get things. With there being such a range of different things, it can apply to all different tastes and demographics.”
Hayley adds that the events of the last few years — such as the shift to hybrid working, the increased focus on employee wellbeing, and the cost of living crisis — have made the Perkbox platform even more essential.
“Everybodys looking for a way to save money and be smarter with their money, so it’s a great platform for that. The fact you’ve got it on your phone is great — it’s so easy to get that cost saving. Also on the wellness front — we embrace hybrid working at Open GI, and having Wellness hub available, so you can deal with the stresses and strains while at home, is a really current and appreciated part of the Perkbox offering.”
Good for growth
Perkbox has become part of Open GI’s day-to-day employee engagement efforts, both through the app itself and the ongoing resources we provide. The latter is something Nick finds especially handy in his role, stating: “From an internal comms perspective, it’s almost like Perkbox are creating the content for us and we’re able to shout about it.”
Hayley only sees the platform’s value going in one direction — and crucially, sees it as something that can scale up with the company.
“We know that it’s something employees use and enjoy. We know it’s contributing to the experience they get at Open GI and we’re more likely to attract and retain somebody. It’s something that can only add to employee engagement as we move forward.
“Perkbox is absolutely core to our EVP and something that we just see growing with us.”