The employers have been shortlisted across eight categories ranging from SMEs to Family Support and Best for Dads. The Awards will be announced at a ceremony at London’s Soho Hotel on 1st November, which will involve a keynote address by MPs Jess Phillips and Flick Drummond, joint chairs of the all-party parliamentary group on women and work, as well as networking sessions and a Q & A with a panel of experts.
The ceremony is the seventh annual Top Employer Awards and takes place in the 10th anniversary year of Workingmums.co.uk. It celebrates companies who are leading the field in developing innovative ways of smart working suited to today’s world.
The Awards recognise employers of all kinds who are progressive in their flexible working practices and proactive in seeking to retain talented staff, particularly working parents who want to combine successful careers with being a parent.
In this year’s shortlist there is a strong showing for technology firms, which are often seen as male-dominated, as well as law firms, which have been known for a long hours culture.
The shortlisted companies are:
Category: SME Award (split into sections for companies with up to 25 employees, and up to 250 employees), sponsored by Johnson Fleming
For small companies who demonstrate a real commitment to work life balance practices which specifically help working parents, such as flexible working, support on return to work from maternity leave and career development for women.
SME 1-25 - Shortlisted: Cuttsy and Cuttsy, Parental Choice, UK Body Talk, Wagada Limited.
SME 26-250 - Shortlisted: Madgex, Turn IT On.
Innovation in Flexible Working
To be eligible employers needed to demonstrate specific policies and practices related to flexible working which are truly innovative and break new ground, whether that be in a particular industry or in general.
Shortlisted: Civil Service Resourcing, Lloyds Banking Group, Vodafone
Best for Dads, sponsored by IG Group
For organisations showing specific policies targeting dads, such as inclusive parenting networks, publications and outreach targeted around dads’ rights, shared parenting initiatives and innovative policies on parental and paternity leave.
Shortlisted: Carillion Plc, Lloyds Banking Group, Madgex
For organisations who demonstrated policies and practices which aim to make it easier to balance work and family life.
Shortlisted: Berwin Leighton Paisner, Carillion Plc, FinancialForce, Lloyds Banking Group, px Limited, Shell, Unilever, WH Smith Retail Holdings Limited.
Talent Attraction, sponsored by CA Technologies
For organisations who demonstrate that their recruitment process openly promotes flexible working.
Shortlisted: Barclays, Berwin Leighton Paisner, EY.
Career progression, sponsored by AT Kearney Ltd
To be eligible employers should demonstrate initiatives aimed at developing women’s leadership potential, including women’s networks, mentoring initiatives and return to work programmes.
Shortlisted: Barclays, Carillion Plc, Lloyds Banking Group, M&G Investments, Macquarie Group, Shell, Sky.
Working Mums Champion
This Award is for stand-out individuals whose efforts have made a big difference to working mums in their workplace.
Shortlisted: Karen Holden, A City Law Firm; Jane Magill, Macquarie Group Ltd; Joeli Brearley, Pregnant Then Screwed; Cheryl Luzet, Wagada Limited.
An overall Top Employer, sponsored by You at Work, will be chosen from the winners of each category.
Gillian Nissim, Founder of Workingmums.co.uk, says: “Every year we are delighted to see new sectors among the entrants to the Awards and to read about the truly innovative work that is being done across the board. We are particularly interested this year to see entrants from traditionally male-dominated sectors such as construction and technology. The aim of these Awards and our Best Practice Report which features our winners is to spread the word about the innovative practices these businesses employ so that others can be inspired by them. These employers fully understand the business case for recruiting and retaining talented female staff and go out of their way to back that up with action.”
The Awards will be judged by an expert panel made up of Gillian Nissim, founder of Workingmums.co.uk; Andy Lake, editor of Flexibility.co.uk; Jennifer Liston-Smith, Director of Coaching & Consultancy at My Family Care; Dave Dunbar, Head of Digital Workplace at Nationwide Building Society; and Clare Kelliher, Professor of Work and Organisation at Cranfield School of Management.
The judges will take part in the Q & A Panel, sponsored by Guidant Group, and there is also a networking session for attendees.
*A copy of the Best Practice Report based on the 2015 Top Employer Awards is available here