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Winners and Commended Companies

Best New Share Plan

bhpbilliton logo
Winner: bhpbilliton

This was a clear winner in a field of quality entries. The judges were impressed by the immense technological operation required to cope with the massive exercise of rolling out a global share plan via a single integrated HR system. Emphasis was given to an innovative plan offering the same tax neutral benefits across the globe to employees in all walks of life, with special attention given to employees in remote locations.

The judges felt that bhpbilliton had gone more than the extra mile to make it easy for employees worldwide to join the plan, creating global shareholders and achieving corporate unity on a global basis.

May Gurney Integrated Services plc logo
Commended: May Gurney Integrated Services plc

The judges felt May Gurney merited a commendation for their enthusiastic approach to launching their first all-employee share plan in their 80 year history. They introduced an uncomplicated plan with a clear rationale of making employees feel valued and recognising their dedication whilst instilling a sense of belonging and commitment to the Company. The plan started with top-level board commitment and excellent employee feedback, which resulted in a well-executed and successful launch with average monthly savings in excess of £120.

Both these entries demonstrated the positive impact that Board involvement can have.

Best Financial Education Programme for Employees

Capita Group plc logo
Winner: The Capita Group plc

The judges had to think long and hard about whether to make this award to Capita for the third year running but they concluded that Capita placed a strong emphasis on understanding the needs and views of their employees' financial education requirements. This year Capita added the FSA’s Financial Capability resources to their Financial Education programme which had received a lot of positive feedback from employees. Congratulations on achieving the Financial Education hat trick.

Henderson Group plc logo
Commended: Henderson Group plc

The judges commended Henderson for an excellent initiative giving a great deal of consideration to the tax consequences of share plan maturity for their employees. An integrated approach resulted in targeted tax information and the introduction of a Group SIPP (Self Invested Pension Plan), one of the first companies to do so.

The judges were disappointed with the overall number of entries in this category and feel that more companies should be encouraged to enter to demonstrate the different range of facilities offered. Although both companies had demonstrated excellent tendencies, the judges felt that neither of these companies had got it quite right and need to think more about quantifiable data.

Most Effective Communication of an Employee Share Plan

0 – 1,000 Employees
Drax Group plc logo
Winner: Drax Group plc

Drax operates a standard plan but showed that you can achieve a good take-up with strong management commitment and personal endorsement from the Chief Executive. Using colour-coding to good effect and keeping communications clear and straightforward, Drax achieve an impressive 91% Partnership Shares result. After undergoing a turbulent few years of corporate restructuring, Drax has a motivated workforce committed to the Company's success.

No commendations

Most Effective Communication of an Employee Share Plan

1,001 – 10, 000 employees
KCOM Group plc logo
Winner: KCOM Group plc

KCOM used MyShares branding, upfront research and a range of communication tools to great effect. KCOM did not need glossy brochures, but chose a retro theme to project effectively the messages they wanted to convey. These strong messages, thoroughly backed by CEO endorsement including an unusual CEO blog, resulted in an impressive 48% of staff signing up to Partnership Shares.

No commendations

Most Effective Communication of an Employee Share Plan

10,001 + Employees
Vodafone plc logo
Winner: Vodafone plc

Vodafone was a clear winner with the judges. They used great imagery coupled with very creative straplines showing how the cost of a daily cup of coffee or weekly magazine could easily be put into a Sharesave account. The use of non-corporate branding and different packs for different segments of the workforce together with a wide range of communications and a variety of entry methods proved a successful mix.

BT Group plc logo
Commended: BT Group plc

Another commendation for BT’s extensive employee consultation and continued quest for improvement and innovation. Their innovative range of communications included e-chats, application by SMS and multilingual webchats. Rebranding and new "cleaner" imagery was used to good effect. The judges wanted to recognise BT as a consistent high performer.

Most Innovative use of Technology

bhpbilliton logo
Winner: bhpbilliton

An ambitious and complex project of combining all bhpbilliton’s payrolls onto one system was extremely well handled by very few project managers. The sheer enormity of the task was inherently reliant on technology and the judges were impressed with the global reach of the programme and trusted the Company that part of the entry was submitted in Zulu!

Cadbury Schweppes plc logo
Commended: Cadbury Schweppes plc

Cadbury Schweppes identified a need for a new global option system with very specific parameters. After searching long and hard and working very closely with their service provider, their new multilingual system has 24/7 access to personal data and modelling tools. This type of system is well used in the US, but is relatively new to the UK. Cadbury Schweppes is commended for recognising and overcoming the challenges of providing the same high service delivery globally.

Best Overall Performance in Fostering Employee Share Ownership

0 - 1,000 Employees
Enterprise Inns plc logo
Winner: Enterprise Inns plc

Enterprise were double Award winners in different categories last year and the judges felt that they were deserving winners in this category this year. They have taken advantage of the full suite of all-employee approved plans with a wide variety of participation routes and excellent commitment from the top. The presentation of the entry was excellent. Enterprise is a great role model for companies of this size.

Telford Home plc logo
Commended: Telford Homes plc

This entry goes to show that less glossy submissions can capture the judges' attention if they are well structured. The judges were impressed by the beneficial effect of share plans on employee retention. Innovative financing had resulted in an impressive 80% take up with 113 out of 131 employee shareholders. A great example of how employee share ownership can have a positive impact in small companies.

Best Overall Performance in Fostering Employee Share Ownership

1,001 - 10,000 Employees
Halcrow Holdings Limited logo
Winner: Halcrow Holdings Limited

Halcrow's entry made it easy to see the positive impact that ESO can have. The judges wanted to mention that this was the ONLY entry that included historical data, corporate targets in a 10 year plan and the spread of employee involvement – the only thing missing was a benchmark against other sectors.

Halcrow shows that employee share ownership is embedded in the corporate culture and takes a forward-looking view to support the links with the corporate objectives.

Halcrow's vision and results are commendable. Hats off to Halcrow.

No Commendations

Best Overall Performance in Fostering Employee Share Ownership

10,001+ employees
HBOS plc logo
Winner: HBOS plc

A comprehensive and holistic approach to share plans. HBOS presented a well-constructed submission that clearly showed how share plans are fully integrated in the total reward package. The judges liked the fact that HBOS had taken a step back to look at the financial decisions that employees have to take in working life and positioned their share plans accordingly. Good measurements, an integrated approach and the recognition of the pros and cons of different share plans make HBOS a deserving winner.

ASDA logo
Commended: ASDA

ASDA has been a familiar face at these Awards over the years. This year the judges wanted to commend ASDA for its strong board commitment and its focus on employee segmentation. Multilingual call centres, corporate environmental objectives, CEO messages on CDs for drivers, SMS applications and strong employee feedback at every stage all contribute to this commendation.

Click here to access a pdf of the Winners Book.
HBOS Employee Share Solutions