The latest holders of the Excellence During Challenges award announced
Since April this year, SELECTIO has been awarding the Excellence During Challenges award to those companies that have demonstrated quality employee management in unpredictable circumstances. The aim of the recognition is to emphasize the importance of caring for employees even in times of crisis and to exchange good practices and initiatives that many companies have launched in this challenging period.
Companies holding the Excellence During Challenges award went through an independent evaluation of their HR practices, and the holders were recently joined by Addiko Bank, CEMEX Croatia, Croatian Academic and Research Network - CARNET, Hrvatski Telekom, JGL, Luckia Croatia, McDonald's, Philip Morris Zagreb, PLIVA and Poslovna inteligencija.
Although these are companies of different sizes that operate in a wide range of sectors and have encountered significantly different challenges during this period, their initiatives, and decisions show that, to them, their employees really come first. All necessary measures and changes in the organization of work were implemented in a timely manner in order to protect employees, all new decisions were communicated to the employees openly and transparently, and they were provided with multiple forms of support to ensure their mental well-being and security.
In addition to introducing additional material and non-material benefits, through surveys, Addiko Bank regularly received suggestions from its employees and checked whether they felt safe and provided with everything they needed to work, and based on the surveys, quickly adjusted the way they work in branches and virtual teams. Also, in just five days, the Bank made work from home possible for 500 of its employees, while CEMEX developed and applied as many as 52 protocols for health protection and safe behaviour.
In CARNET, besides investing efforts in caring for employees, great efforts were made during the crisis period to support distance learning for all primary and secondary schools in Croatia, as well as to implement the second phase of CARNET's e-School program, which contributed to successful and easier transition from the traditional way of teaching to online teaching. In less than 10 days, Hrvatski Telekom completely reorganized its business in order to enable safe remote work from home for more than 4,000 of its employees, whose work enabled the continuation of uninterrupted communication and connection of the entire society. Through daily internal communication, the company provided full technical and advisory support to all employees so they could easily adapt to work from home, and they rewarded this in a large internal survey, which showed the greatest employee satisfaction in the last 15 years.
JGL has launched a focused internal and external communication platform on COVID-19, with the aim of providing support and exchange of views among employees from different markets, as well as educating the general public about experiences and best JGL practices, while Luckia Croatia notes that during the crisis, they further strengthened the team spirit and communication and enabled employees to make suggestions for new services and projects and participate in their development, which led to excellent results. McDonald's continued with individual rewarding of employees and allowed the release of at-risk employees from obligation to work.
Philip Morris Zagreb has launched a number of wellbeing practices for its employees as part of the Stay active, stay healthy, stay productive program, while PLIVA has introduced a large number of crisis management practices to ensure business continuity, and from those focused on employee well-being they note Developmental Thursdays, which is a cycle of weekly online trainings available to all employees, and a newsletter Connected even when we are not together with appropriate topics related to maintaining mental health. Poslovna inteligencija has placed emphasis on further digitizing its processes and ensuring a balance between the private and business lives of employees.
Although the focus of employers was on their own employees, there were various laudable socially responsible business initiatives, which most often included financial and material donations for medical institutions and business partners who were more severely affected by the crisis. Companies with recognition Excellence During Challenges donated funds to Petrova Hospital, KBC Dubrava, KBC Sestre milosrdnice, KBC Osijek and KBC Split, and in various ways provided help to the Red Cross through donations of meals, protective equipment, and volunteer activities.