Key Practices from the World's Best Workplaces 2019

Joseph Benkanoun Greene

The 2019 list of the World's Best Workplaces was announced on Wednesday October 2nd, with a total 25 multinational organisations gaining recognition for their consistent efforts in developing great workplace cultures on a global basis. Ireland had a particularly strong performance on this year's list, with 11 Irish operations appearing within the Top 25. In fact, Irish operations perform among the best of the best, with 8 of the Top 10 listed organisations containing an Irish operation.

These organisations are developing great cultures through well thought out, authentic practices. These practices bring their values to life, provide a platform for their employees to engage with their colleagues, and  give employees a sense of their role within the workplace at large. We've selected some great practices from the Irish operations on this year's list to show you what these companies are doing - and maybe even provide some inspiration for you to put something similar in place!



Cisco - Bring Your Kids To Work Day

More than simply a day filled with face painting and balloons, Cisco's Bring Your Kids To Work Day took the opportunity to make use of their product suite to get little minds thinking. Sessions were targeted to age-relevant groups, and attendees developed their coding skills with a Professor from a local university, applied the basics of electronic engineering to their personalised Rubik's Cubes, and played with technology-themed toys that brought Cisco's Internet of Things technology to life! The kids left with their natural curiosity sparked, and an understanding that work wasn't such a bad place for mum and dad to be every day.



Salesforce - Social Ambassador Programme

Employees at Great Workplaces are (rightfully) proud of their organisation's brand, and Salesforce's Social Ambassador Programme makes it easy for teammates to share that pride. Several times a week, employees who have registered for the programme receive a notification via app or email that enables them to easily share exciting and inspiring content about Salesforce on their own personal networks. Sharing their inspiration with friends and family helps to drive greater pride in their own work and their company's mission, and simultaneously supports Salesforce's employer brand as one of the World's Best Workplaces.


DHL Express Ireland Ltd

DHL Express - DHL's Got Heart

Leveraging their global network for global reach, DHL's Got Heart is an initiative that recognises the everyday heroes within their organisation who use their spare time to make the world a better place. The process connects DHL's local offices to their global colleagues, and helps to promote the selfless work that employees worldwide are doing in their communities (and further afield). National winners are chosen who are then entered into regional competitions, a process which culminates in a global ceremony where a major prize fund is donated across all category winners.


Mars Ireland

Mars - Mars Ombudsman

Providing employees with a neutral and impartial ear for any work-related issues, the Mars Ombudsman programme is a completely confidential third party, specially trained for the sole focus of delivery of the Ombudsman service. Visiting each Mars unit once per year, the Ombudsman encourages an open culture, ensuring that every Mars Associate is provided with an independent and confidential channel of communication - making sure that they can be heard and have a dialogue about the issues that matter to them, while also empowering them to find solutions.



SAP - Autism at Work

Helping to promote inclusivity and break down barriers, SAP's Autism at Work programme is a key part of their diversity strategy. Partnering with Specialisterne, they recruit and support talented people on the Autistic Spectrum, providing development opportunities for those with abilities that typically aren't fully appreciated in the world of work. SAP have worked to build empathy and understanding amongst teammates by providing experiential workshops and training to colleagues, ensuring that all teams have a sufficient level of awareness to create a culture where all employees are empowered to do their very best work.


EY Ireland

EY - Graduate Induction App

With a commitment to attracting top talent with a growth mindset, EY have developed strong hiring and welcoming practices that entail engaging with new hires early and often, to ensure they have a deep understanding of the organisational culture and goals. This process was streamlined when they moved from a traditional booklet to their Graduate Induction App, a platform for new recruits to learn everything they need to about the organisation right in their pocket, and provides the basis of their introduction to an induction programme that contains fundamental courses, team-based activities, and departmental training.


SAS Ireland Ltd

SAS - Data for Good

SAS is proud to be part of the Data for Good movement, a programme which encourages using data in meaningful ways to solve humanitarian issues. In 2019, they teamed up with three transition year students from Castleblayney, County Monaghan on their research project for BT Young Scientists - "Absenteeism as a Result of Type 1 Diabetes". Working with SAS analytics to bring their data to life, SAS helped these students to turn knowledge into understanding - empowering the students and enabling them to continue researching and publicising their investigation. 



Workday - Sponsor an Office

Workday is a fast-growing business, quadrupling its employee numbers in four years in some offices. Workday’s Sponsor an Office programme gives the European teams regular time with senior executive sponsors to find out how other offices maintain the Workday culture as they grow. As a sponsor, it provides a chance to say “we recently overcame this challenge, this is what we learned, do you think you can build on that?” It’s about breaking down geographical boundaries, making connections and sharing what’s worked.



Adecco - UP

Drawing together all their existing reward and recognition criteria, Adecco introduced the single umbrella of their recognition portal UP, standing for "Unlimited Potential". Here, associates can keep easily track of all opportunities available with the brand, view a 'Hall of Fame' of colleagues who have been recognised, and can view Adecco's 10 value statements - with recognition available for those who bring the core values to life. An 'Elite Club' rewards the best performing consultants and Branch Managers, who also get invited to and end-of-year lunch with the President of General Staffing.


AbbVie Ireland

AbbVie - AbbVie in Motion

Encouraging an active workforce, AbbVie in Motion takes a global perspective while motivating employees to increase the amount of exercise they fit into their daily lives. A four-week fitness challenge that encompasses AbbVie's worldwide employee network, teams of two to 20 employees compete against each other to become the top fit team on regional and global leaderboards. Supported by a range of local activities including tennis lessons and mountain walks, as well as health webinars and a specialised news feed, the programme provided a great opportunity for networking and team building - as well as some healthy competition!


CNP Santander

CNP Santander - Development Programme

Training and development are key to an engaged and innovative modern workplace, and CNP Santander actively encourage a learning ethos for employees of all levels - right up to the CEO! A substantial development budget is in place for all colleagues with diplomas, certificates, and even Master's programmes receiving funding if relevant to the employee's role within the organisation. Bespoke training and courses are provided internally, as well as one-to-one coaching to hone leadership skills. Alongside this, they leverage their global reach by providing tuition on-site in Spanish and French for any employee that wishes to brush up on their language skills.


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