Power to the People….Friendship Strike Gold
Published by Kerrie Beck for Longhurst Group in Housing and also in Communities
Social landlord, Friendship Care and Housing (Friendship) has been recognised as an organisation very keen to embrace ‘power to the people’ and is considered a great place to work by staff.
Having met 173 evidence requirements, Friendship has been awarded the Investors in People (IIP) Gold Accreditation. This prestigious award is achieved by only 2.5% of the organisations who pursue the Gold endorsement.
Over a two week period Assessors from Investors in People (IIP) collected evidence and carried out extensive interviews with 52 members of staff selected from across the business, including housing, income, care and support.
“We listen, we support, we care” this was a comment from one person interviewed, but a sentiment echoed by many. Throughout the assessment people described with great enthusiasm and sometimes emotion how they individually and as teams make a real and demonstrable difference to customers lives.
Friendship were commended on their determination and ability to create a positive culture where people clearly enjoy working for the organisation. Communication is classed as excellent, in that people have a good understanding of what’s in store in the short, medium and long term and how their individual and team performance links to what Friendship is seeking to achieve overall.
IIE Assessor, Richard Tomes commented “This is a highly significant achievement that not only places Friendship in the top flight of accredited organisations it also demonstrates that world class standards are in place.” He added “Although Friendship is part of the Longhurst Group of companies, it still retains its own identity and has a brand recognised by customers and service users.”
Rachel Bennett Head of HR (West) said “To be recognised as a great place to work and to have Friendship’s culture of empowerment, involvement and continuous improvement through our learning and development programme described as ‘exemplary’ is great and really satisfying.”
Friendship’s Managing Director, Jonathan Driffill said “I’m absolutely thrilled with the result. I’m so very proud of our fantastic people and that they have been justifiably recognised for their commitment and passion. We face many challenges in social housing, we all know how much blood, sweat and sometimes tears go into our work, so it’s brilliant that this effort has not only been recognised but commended by the IIE Assessors. Special thanks must also go to our Valuing our Workforce group who have been pulling all the evidence together since March and to the members of staff who were selected for interview.”