Workingmums.co.uk announces shortlist for its 2014 Top Employer Awards

Twenty seven of the most progressive employers and their representatives have been shortlisted for this year’s Workingmums.co.uk Top Employer Awards.

The employers have been shortlisted across eight categories ranging from SMEs to Family Support and Best for Dads. The Awards, sponsored by McDonald’s Restaurants Ltd, will be announced at a ceremony at London’s Soho Hotel on 4th November which will involve a keynote address by Wendy Hallett, MBE, Founder and MD of Hallett Retail [pictured], networking sessions and a Q & A with a panel of experts.

The ceremony is the fifth annual Top Employer Awards which celebrate companies who are leading the field in developing innovative ways of smart working suited to today’s world.

The Awards recognise employers of all kinds who are progressive in their flexible working practices and proactive in seeking to retain talented staff, particularly working parents who want to combine successful careers with being a parent.

The shortlisted companies are:

Category: SME Award (split into sections for companies with up to 25 employees, and up to 250 employees), sponsored by WM Recruit

For small companies who demonstrate a real commitment to work life balance practices which specifically help working parents, such as flexible working, support on return to work from maternity leave and career development for women.

SME 1-25

Shortlisted: Saros Research Ltd, Cream Consultancy, Reality HR Ltd, Parental Choice, Archie & Doris, UK Body Talk Ltd, Hireserve Ltd, First Tutors

SME 26-250

Shortlisted: McMillan Williams Solicitors, iCrossing Ltd, Kloud Ltd

Innovation in Flexible Working, sponsored by Atkins

To be eligible employers needed to demonstrate specific policies and practices related to flexible working which are truly innovative and break new ground, whether that be in a particular industry or in general.

Shortlisted: BAE Systems, IBM UK Ltd, Unilever, AT Kearney Ltd

Best for Dads, sponsored by IG Group

For organisations showing specific policies targeting dads, such as inclusive parenting networks, publications and outreach targeted around dads’ rights, shared parenting initiatives and innovative policies on parental and paternity leave.

Shortlisted: The London School of Economics and Political Science, A T Kearney Ltd

Family Support, sponsored by MamaBabyBliss Ltd

For organisations who demonstrated policies and practices which aim to make it easier to balance work and family life.

Shortlisted: BAE Systems, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Danone Nutricia Early Life Nutrition, The Roslin Institute (University of Edinburgh)

Talent Attraction, sponsored by CA Technologies

For organisations who demonstrate that their recruitment process openly promotes flexible working.

Shortlisted: Reality HR Ltd, Get Ahead VA

Career progression, sponsored by Royal Mail

To be eligible employers should demonstrate initiatives aimed at developing women’s leadership potential, including women’s networks, mentoring initiatives and return to work programmes.

Shortlisted: London School of Economics and Political Science, AT Kearney Ltd, Sapient Ltd, P-zazz

Working mums Champion, sponsored by Arise Virtual Solutions

This Award is for stand-out individuals whose efforts have made a big difference to working mums in their workplace.

Shortlisted: Adeline Ginn, Women in Rail; Shilpa Shah, Deloitte; Sue Whalley, Royal Mail Group; Fiona Roche, Lloyds Banking Group.

An overall Top Employer will be chosen from the winners of each category.

Gillian Nissim, Founder of Workingmums.co.uk, says: “We are excited by the standard of entries this year and the breadth of industries represented, from law and banking to transport and engineering. The aim of these Awards and our Best Practice Report which features our winners is to spread the word about the innovative practices these businesses employ so that others can be inspired by them. These employers fully understand the business case for recruiting and retaining talented female staff and go out of their way to back that up with action.”

The Awards will be judged by an expert panel made up of Gillian Nissim, founder of Workingmums.co.uk; Andy Lake, editor of Flexibility.co.uk; Jennifer Liston-Smith, Director of Coaching & Consultancy at My Family Care; Dave Dunbar, Head of BT Flexible Working Services; and Clare Kelliher, Professor of Work and Organisation at Cranfield School of Management.

The judges will take part in the Q & A Panel, sponsored by BAE Systems, and there is a networking session for attendees, sponsored by Unilever.

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