Warehouse wins big in EEO Work & Life awards

The Warehouse came on top for its parenting programmes in the EEO Trust Work & Life Awards this year bagging the Big Red Sheds the Supreme Award.More than 200 employees in the company's South Auckland distribution centres took part in the SKIP (Strategies for Kids, Information for Parents) programmes run by the Ministry of Social Development.SKIP, which has been running from 2004, provides parents with practical advice on how to teach children to be independent, and socially responsible.

The Warehouse came on top for its parenting programmes in the EEO Trust Work & Life Awards this year bagging the Big Red Sheds the Supreme Award.

More than 200 employees in the company’s South Auckland distribution centres took part in the SKIP (Strategies for Kids, Information for Parents) programmes run by the Ministry of Social Development.

SKIP, which has been running from 2004, provides parents with practical advice on how to teach children to be independent, and socially responsible.

The Warehouse Human Resources Manager Kirsty Wooding said the company wanted to build a stronger sense of community.

Despite good performance in the centre, staff felt there was a gap in understanding between largely Pākehā managers and the multicultural distribution centre employees, and between the cultures in the workforce.

“We needed to know what made each other tick, understand where we came from and how to further support and grow our people and our operation.”

“The Warehouse saw a golden opportunity to boost communication and understanding in its multi-cultural workforce through the common experience of parenthood,” says Dr Philippa Reed, EEO Trust chief executive and one of six awards judges.

The parenting courses, which took place during work time in 2008 and 2009, drew out participants’ feelings and beliefs about what being a good parent meant and explored how to help each other be better parents, bringing staff closer.

Engagement and productivity rose and absenteeism decreased, said Mrs Wooding.

The listed company also won the Work & Life/Diversity Initiative Award, which celebrates initiatives that target opportunities for greater engagement and productivity.

The annual awards, which are now in its 13th year, attracted more than 40 entries this year.

The Warehouse has to compete against Chapman Tripp, BNZ, Bluebird Foods, SKYCITY Auckland, Claud Switzer Memorial Trust and Truck Stops to win the title.

The winners of the five categories included: The Warehouse; ANZ New Zealand; Liddell Contracting; OMEGA and Henare Clarke, Downer New Zealand.


EEO Trust Work & Life Awards 2010 – winners and entrants

Work & Life/Diversity Initiative Award

Winner: The Warehouse (also the Supreme Award winner)
Highly Commended: Chapman Tripp
BNZ
Bluebird Foods
SKYCITY Auckland
Claud Switzer Memorial Trust
Truck Stops

Workplace Work & Life Award

Winner: ANZ New Zealand
Highly Commended: Microsoft New Zealand
Bluebird Foods
Hamilton Multicultural Services Trust
Mind and Body Consultants
Otago Polytechnic
Pathways
Porter Novelli
NZSki

Skills Highway Award

Winner: Liddell Contracting
Highly Commended: Canterbury Spinners
Highly Commended: Millennium Hotels and Resorts
Highly Commended: New Zealand Army
ANZCO Foods
Counties Manukau District Health Board
George Weston Foods (NZ) – Baking Division
IDEA Services (IHC)
Lifewise Homecare Services
New Zealand Post Group
Palmerston North City Council
SKYCITY Auckland
Te Roopu Taurima o Manukau Trust
Upper Hutt Cosmopolitan Club

Tomorrow’s Workforce Award

Winner: OMEGA
Bay of Plenty District Health Board
Briscoe Group
Bupa Care Services

Walk the Talk Award

Winner: Henare Clarke, Downer New Zealand
Carla Soutar, Karen Walker
James Coddington, NZSki
Jane Sweeney, Porter Novelli
Leopoldo Aguirre, Idea Services (IHC)
Vern Rosieur, Northpower