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British Business Future Lies With Engaging Its Employees


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Involving employees fully in the future of the firms they work for will be a key step if businesses are to innovate and take advantage of new opportunities, an independent review announced today.

The MacLeod Review of employee engagement has recommended government support and more cooperation by UK businesses both large and small, to make sure the relationship between employees and employers is at the centre of successful business plans.

Led by David MacLeod and Nita Clarke, the review was commissioned in September to make recommendations on promoting employee engagement.

David MacLeod said:

“This is about unleashing the potential of people at work and enabling them to be the best they can be. Whether we are in a downturn or in better economic times, engagement is a key to innovation and competitiveness.

“Engagement is increasingly recognised as vital by senior figures in the public sector, the private sector and trades unions. We are delighted that if our recommendations are accepted, a distinguished sponsor group has already agreed to work with us to raise awareness and understanding.

“Employers in all parts of the economy can make a success of employee engagement through culture change, rather than investing significant financial resources.”

Nita Clarke said:

“Our recommendations set out a road-map for government to offer help and support, and for businesses and employee groups to help each other.

“By respecting the contribution employees can make and ensuring they are fully involved in developing their organisation’s future, employers can help unlock their full potential. If workplaces up and down the UK learn from the best standards that are already in place, the whole country will benefit.

“When done well, employee engagement is a win for the organisation, a win for the individual and therefore a win for the country as a whole.”

The MacLeod Review has recommended:

The government should work to raise awareness of employee engagement benefits and techniques.A senior sponsor group bringing together representatives from business, the public sector, not-for-profit organisations and unions, should be set up to boost understanding of this vital topic – many leading figures leaders have already agreed to be part of this group.The government and its agencies should work together to ensure their support is aligned and tailored to the needs of different organisations in different sectors of the economy seeking to enhance levels of employee engagement.A range of more practical support for organisations who want to raise levels of employee engagement should be made available by March 2010. This support should be designed in consultation with businesses and other organisations to ensure it is tailored to their needs.

Contributors to the review included some of the biggest names in British business, as well as smaller firms and public sector bodies.

“”Supportive quotes from sponsors, sourced by Press Office and Review Team

1. The MacLeod Review began its work in September 2008.

2. The full report to government is attached.

3. Review contributors included Sainsbury’s UBS Group, Standard Chartered, HSBC, Financial Times Group, Connect Union, Institute of Directors, USDAW and the Work Foundation.

4. Leading figures who have agreed to be part of the sponsor group include:

Adrian Askew – General Secretary, Connect Union

Richard Baker – Non Executive Chairman, Virgin Active

Brendan Barber – General Secretary, TUC

Sir Michael Bichard – Director, Institute for Government

Dame Carol Black – Director, UK Government’s Health and Work Programme

Stephen Bubb – Chief Executive, Acevo

Mike Carr – RDA Enterprise Director

Clare Chapman – Director General of Workforce, Department of Health

Cary Cooper – Professor, Lancaster University Management School & UK Government Foresight Programme

Rona Fairhead – CEO, Financial Times Group

Gordon Frazer – UK Managing Director, Microsoft

John Hannett – General Secretary, Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (USDAW)

Chris Humphries – Chief Executive, UK Commission for Education & Skills (UKCES)

Will Hutton – Executive Vice Chair, Work Foundation

Justin King – CEO, Sainsbury’s

Sir Alan Jones – Chairman Emeritus, Toyota UK

Richard Lambert – Director General, CBI

Leigh Lewis – Permanent Secretary, Department of Work & Pensions (DWP)

Tim Melville-Ross – Chairman, Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) & DTZ

John M Neill CBE – Group Chief Executive, Unipart Group

Sir Gus O’Donnell – Cabinet Secretary & Head of the Home Civil Service

Jackie Orme – Chief Executive, CIPD

Sir Eric Peacock – Current or former Chairman/leader of 10 SMEs

Chris Pilling – Head of Direct Banking, HSBC

Peter Sands – CEO, Standard Chartered Bank

Sir Martin Sorrell – CEO, WPP

Ruth Spellman OBE – Chief Executive, Chartered Management Institute

John Taylor – Chief Executive, Acas

Miles Templeman – Director General, Institute of Directors (IoD)

Alex Wilmot-Sitwell – Co-CEO, UBS Investment Bank

John Wright – National Chairman, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB)

5. David MacLeod has a portfolio of responsibilities which include being a Non Exec Director of the Department for International Development, Non Exec Director of the Ministry of Justice, Fellow of the Sunningdale Institute, Senior Associate of Towers Perrin and Visiting Professor of the Cass Business School. He is also a Fellow of the RSA, Institute of Marketing and Ashridge Business School.

6. David has led private sector organisations through major programmes of change and worked at the Cabinet Office as Senior Adviser on Change and Performance. He has also worked at Towers Perrin as Senior Adviser supporting chief executives in both the public and private sectors to implement change in order to enhance performance. He has co-authored a book called “The Extra Mile” on the theme of how to fully engage employees.

7. Nita Clarke is the Director of the Involvement and Participation Association (IPA). She was formerly the adviser on trade unions to Prime Minister Tony Blair, working as assistant political secretary in the Political Office at 10 Downing Street from January 2001 to June 2007. Her role included liaison with individual unions and the TUC, developing national policy in areas such as the two-tier workforce and work-life balance, supporting ministers by trouble-shooting in industrial disputes.

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© Crown Copyright. Material taken from the BERR- Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform replacing DTI - Department for Trade and Industry. Reproduced under the terms and conditions of the Click-Use Licence.

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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2009-07-17 12:20:14 in Employee Articles

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