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It’s not about The Bradford Factor

The Bradford Factor is used in human resource management as a means of measuring worker absenteeism. We don’t do that here.

When I first started out at Equilibrium, our Managing Partner, Gaynor Rigby, was very clear that she didn’t want policy and measurement for measurement and policy sake.

We offer a great holiday package and part of our culture is that you can call in up to 10am on that day and say you won’t be in, and that’s totally fine. If you are having an off day, you need to take time to sort something out at home, or you just aren’t feeling it, we understand that this happens and are happy to accommodate it. So why then would we want to highlight when people are off and use it as some sort of stick with which to beat staff? The answer is, we don’t.

There are masses of HR policies and procedures, all of which are readily available to staff and all of which we adhere to. You can’t become the Sunday Times’ 5th Best Small Company to Work For (see what I did there) by having constrictive, unrealistic or unlawful policies and procedures in place. I expect that most companies that have award winning cultures don’t beat their teams over the head with their, frankly massive, HR handbooks.

Employment Law is there for the protection of staff and employers, we get it and we respect it, but we also know that treating our team fairly, legally and with compassion and freedom, those policies and procedures tend to be lightly thumbed. Create an environment of accountability and transparency and people will respond.

As Head of Culture it’s my job to ensure that Equilibrium continues to be a great place to work. Not just to attract new talent but to keep the talent we already have. Not long after I started in my current role we did a core values exercise: I spoke to everyone in the business from our Founder to our newest graduates, I asked them what values are important to them. It became clear very quickly that everyone at EQ hugely values integrity. They also want to work somewhere that is fun, respects staff and makes a difference to individuals and the wider community. Throw in free breakfast, a fantastic holiday allowance, great salaries plus other benefits and you get happy staff, doing a great job whilst feeling valued. It was a valuable exercise to do and I would recommend that anyone with a workforce asks the questions of their team. If you understand what is important to the people in your business you can ensure you provide it.

We know that we are only as good as our people, and that people change as their personal circumstances change, so it’s important that we keep up with our people, continue to tweak and improve what we do and make sure that staff remain happy and productive. We know that people at EQ are so much more than Bradford factors and by treating them as such, we get the very best from the whole team, which in turn means that our clients receive the very best service.