Great Companies Show Finance Can Be Fun

 

Blog - Peter Barnes - December 10, 2014

Great Companies Show Finance Can Be Fun

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From talking ducks to giant flagpoles, companies in finance and insurance work hard to differentiate their brands in the eyes of potential clients. At the same time, some of the most successful organizations also realize the potential in promoting the unique and supportive workplaces of the people who make their policies possible.

Assurance: Family-Focused Finance

At Illinois-headquartered insurer Assurance, nine in ten employees surveyed by Great Rated! say they're encouraged to balance their work and their personal lives. For many, that means taking advantage of telecommuting or flexible scheduling. While others make use of the fitness equipment, video games and happy hours in the headquarters' penthouse or one of 60-plus wellness events throughout the year.

"The company allows you to balance your life and work, provides great opportunities for education and training. Assurance is a company that makes you feel like you are really an important part of a team," one employee says.

Communicating these benefits is essential to attracting the kind of people that help Assurance build on that positive culture. Assurance makes sure that both consumers and job seekers who visit the company's Facebook page have access to extensive information about Assurance's workplace culture through the embedded Great Rated! Facebook app. The organization also increases its visibility among insurers on the Great Rated! website through featured placement on the home page and by review options that reduce potential distractions from competitors' ads presented alongside the company's review. Assurance also elects to exercise control over the job listings that run with the review so job seekers have easy access to information directly from the company on positions that might appeal to them. To that end, Assurance also features its workplace awards front and center on its "about us" page, including its no. 4 place on Fortune's list of the best small and medium workplaces. The company also spreads the word about these accomplishments on Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media.

Aflac: Having Fun, Giving Back

Covering 50 million people worldwide, Aflac is one of the world's largest insurers. Yet employees say their experience in the workplace defies the expectations many might have about working for a financial services company.

"We have a full week of employee appreciation activities that even our families can participate in," says one. "We have monthly games and prize drawings, along with quality and production incentives. We also have a game lounge where we can go play games or the Wii on our breaks or lunch times to release any stress."

A full nine in ten employees surveyed at Aflac say the organization knows how to celebrate special events, and 95 percent also say they're proud of the ways the company gives back to the community. Aflac encourages volunteerism with donations and awards for active employees, whose volunteer time totaled more than 11,000 hours in 2013. Building community – both among colleagues and outside of work – is an essential part of the culture. Aflac makes that clear on its career website by incorporating a graphic and link to the announcement of its presence on Fortune's list of Best Companies to Work For 16 years running. It also mentions the Fortune list distinction when promoting jobs on its LinkedIn page, as well as in the graphics that comprise the background of the company's Facebook and Twitter accounts.

ACUITY: More Than Just an Office

Plenty of corporate headquarters offer employee gyms, but ACUITY'S 9,800-square-foot fitness center does them one better, with massage facilities, country-club-style cherry wood locker rooms and free yoga classes. And that's just one slice of the investment this Wisconsin-based insurer has made in its workplace well-being.

"The corporate culture and climate at ACUITY is not only unlike any other insurance company, but unlike any other business I've been involved with. Doing things like toga and beer stein parties, snowman-building contests, mechanical bull riding, roller skate parties and Ferris wheel rides, all of which were done in the building or on the grounds, truly makes ACUITY unique," one employee says.

Summing up the culture at a company Great Place to Work and Fortune named the best mid-sized employer four years in a row takes more than a description of its 50-pound holiday gift boxes or quarterly breakfasts served by executives. ACUITY turns to multimedia like its award-winning entry in Great Place to Work's "We Love Our Workplace" video contest, featuring the company's headquarters after the zombie apocalypse. There's also a dedicated link on its homepage to a page explaining the significance of its Great Place to Work designation. Likewise, links on its careers page direct job seekers to employee survey results on Great Rated! that validate the company's message about how it sustains a standout workplace.

Organizations like ACUITY, Aflac and Assurance have worked diligently for years to distinguish themselves as places that treat their people with respect and care. Along the way, their efforts to share how employees feel about their workplaces also tell a powerful story about their values that make them distinct in the eyes of job seekers and consumers alike.

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Be sure your talent acquisition teams know how Great Rated! helps support their recruiting efforts! See the best practices examples employers are using to promote their workplace culture in this recorded webinar with Great Rated! CEO Kim Peters and Great Place to Work’s Chris Culkin.

Peter Barnes