STRONG LEADERSHIP TOGETHER with a great ethos of offering the best service to customers and treating staff like friends and family makes it a pleasure to work at web hosting firm Rackspace.
"This job is without a doubt the best I have had so far in my career, I love the people and atmosphere and there is a great vibe here," says one employee. "I hope to continue this adventure for many years to come."
These views appear to be widely held among Rackspace staff members. The company wins 81% positive scores in our staff survey for workers loving what they do and being excited about the future of the organisation. The experience people gain is also valuable for the future (80%). Rackspace ranks in the top 10 on all three questions.
The Uxbridge-based company, which was founded in 1998 and employs 479 staff, offers good salaries and benefits including free healthcare, childcare vouchers, gym membership and a tax-free bike scheme. To make sure people take breaks there is a games room for table tennis and table football as well as games stations in its three offices. Staff get an extra day off for their birthday, half a day for Christmas shopping and those who have five years' service get a cheque for £1,000. There is a four-day induction programme so new employees can get to know the ins and outs of the business, as well as each department, and they get a further 22 hours of formal training a year, including external experiential learning. The workforce is also supported with time off and funding for non-work-related qualifications. This is good for personal growth (79%), say employees, who feel they can make a difference in the organisation (also 79%) as well as a contribution to its success (80%) and this gives them a lot of pride (84%).
Some employees, however, believe they have skills the firm could use but doesn't, earning it a positive score of just 48% in our staff survey, the seventh lowest result for this question. They nonetheless believe the firm provides a great service to its customers (89%, a top 10 score) and they care about delivering it (97%, a score bettered by just three other firms).
The year starts with an annual "kick-off" to discuss the challenges ahead and there are monthly company-wide meetings to talk about business developments and important news. A weekly newsletter also keeps employees updated. And, if that isn't enough, staff can get the answers they want from the horse's mouth. The leadership team are happy to talk and to take questions and truly live the values of the firm (73%). Managers also talk openly and honestly (80%), regularly express their appreciation for a job well done and care about staff as individuals (both 78%).
Impromptu barbecues and tug-of-war competitions, bring your children to work day, and a social budget of £500 per head for trips abroad, water sports days or dinner at top London venues such as Kensington Roof Gardens, result in employees having lots of fun with their colleagues (83%). There is a nice buzz in the office (73%, a top 15 score) and Rackspace is the kind of place where people go out of their way to help each other (82%).
The economic climate does not make staff worry about the future of the firm (72%, the eighth highest score for this question).