William Hill - Loyal Service Awards
Interview with Ian Ross - Group HR Manager
Following the acquisition of Stanley Racing in June 2005, William Hill now have a network of over 2,250 betting shops across the UK and Ireland, making it the largest operator in the UK, by number of shops.
Cottrills had previously provided the loyal service award scheme for Stanley Racing since 2002. Following their acquisition by William Hill, Cottrills became the service provider in 2006 for the entire expanded William Hill network.
William Hill now recognises and rewards their staff at 10, 20, 25, 30 and 40 years service.
Q. Prior to using Cottrills did William Hill reward staff for loyal service?
A: "Yes, we’ve had a Loyal Service Award scheme in place for many years."
Q. What did your loyal service awards previously consist of?
A: "The scheme we had in place recognised 25 years service and consisted of a £500 cheque, a gold sovereign minted in the anniversary year, an additional two weeks holiday in the anniversary year and an extension to Company sick pay entitlement. In addition, there would generally be a regional event for employees achieving 25 years, such as a day at the races and dinner."
Q. What prompted you to use Cottrills?
A: "We knew Stanley Racing used Cottrills when we acquired them and was already aware of Cottrills through general knowledge of employee benefits. During integration of the two retail businesses we continued to use Cottrills for Stanley employees and were impressed with the range and quality of gifts available. We decided that it was an appropriate time to review our existing scheme and it made sense to use an existing provider with whom we had a relationship".
Q. Was it difficult expanding a scheme already put in place by Stanley Racing to also include the employees of William Hill?
A: "No, we knew we wanted to expand our existing arrangements and combine what we viewed as the best from both."
Q. Has the scheme changed at all since it was originally implemented by Stanley Racing?
A: "Yes, we have increased the service milestones, retained the additional benefits of holiday, sick pay and celebratory event at 25 years, and added a 40-year service award in addition to 30 years service."
Q. What does William Hill hope to achieve by rewarding its employees for Loyal Service?
A: "Recognising loyalty and service is important and having this scheme in place is part of our overall recognition and reward policy. We believe we have a good range of employee benefits and this forms part of the total employee ‘package’. "
A: "We hope that employee’s feel that their loyalty is appreciated and tangibly recognised, and that by doing so there are genuine business benefits. Although difficult to quantify we would see this as aiding retention, engendering loyalty and engagement leading to more motivated, productive and committed employees, who see William Hill as a good place to work."
Q. What has the feedback been like from your employees?
A: "Overall the feedback has been extremely positive. Employees talk about the loyalty awards and are actively interested in what colleagues are getting. The new service milestones are appreciated and generally employees have been delighted with the choice of gifts available."