July 24, 2023. | News

Investors In People

Penta achieved the internationally recognized Investors in People accreditation in June after months of preparation by a cross-functional team.

Investors In People is considered the gold standard for people management and is a mark of an organization’s commitment to following international best practices in the HR function. It was created by the UK government in 1991 as one of the first accreditation of its kind with the aim of promoting good workplace practices to the benefit of employees, companies, and customers.

One of the pivotal members of the Penta team responsible for this achievement was Penta’s HR Manager. Joanna Milhuisen. In this interview, Milhuisen is asked about the process required to gain this accreditation and what it means to the company, its staff, and its clients.

Congratulations on the recent accreditation with Investors In People. Could you explain a little bit about what Investors in People is, and what this accreditation signifies?

Joanna Milhuisen: Thank you. We are all very excited about this accreditation. To put it briefly, Investors in People is a recognized international standard for people management. Investors In People award accreditation to organizations that adhere to their framework which sets out what it takes to lead, support, and manage people successfully and sustainably.

For us at Penta, this certification confirms our commitment to our employees’ growth and development, which in turn, boosts our overall productivity and performance. We see our Investors In People certification as a recognition of our work in building a supportive and ultimately more productive work culture.

What processes and steps did you have to complete to achieve accreditation? 

JM: To achieve accreditation, we went through a rigorous, multi-step process. It started with an internal self-assessment where we measured our policies and practices against the Investors In People framework. During this process, we highlighted a few areas for development and worked to roll out additional initiatives across the company to address these points.  These included some additional mentorship programs, continuous learning opportunities, and wellness initiatives. An external assessor then conducted detailed evaluations, including employee interviews, and carried out a thorough review of our policies and how they were reflected in practice. This culminated in a comprehensive report validating our practices and leading to accreditation.

How long does the process of accreditation take?

JM: The entire process from the initial self-assessment to receiving the final accreditation took around a year, including the time taken to design and implement the additional initiatives that we introduced based on our initial self-assessment. It’s also important to point out that we look upon our Investors In People award as part of an ongoing commitment rather than a one-off certification, and we expect to build on this process to further develop our policies and practices as we move forward.

What did you learn from the process as a company?

JM: Personally, I found the self-assessment and staff interviewing stages to be incredibly revealing and insightful. It’s always true that the people on the receiving end of all our policies are the best placed to assess their effectiveness, but in the cut and thrust of daily work, it’s easy to forget. It was very valuable to hear some first-hand experience and we were able to adapt and implement some new policies based on the stories we heard. We plan to conduct these staff interviews on a much more regular basis and introduce other ways of collecting feedback in the future so that we can get a consistent flow of Opinions from the team that can inform our future direction.

Overall, what impact do you think that Investors In People accreditation will have on Penta’s employees and clients?

JM: We hope that this accreditation will create an ingrained culture of maintaining the highest HR standards across the organization. At the end of the day, a certificate is a fantastic piece of paper to have, but it only really matters if we build on all this hard work and not only maintain the standards we have achieved but build on them to reach even further. I am proud of the benchmark we have set and look forward to seeing the benefits of a more motivated, satisfied, and productive team.

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