Birketts hosts Business Leaders Roundtable
31 May 2023
On 25 May 2023, Birketts hosted a roundtable of some of the region’s top business leaders.
Held at the firm’s Norwich office as part of Birketts’ support for the Best Employers Eastern Region initiative, the roundtable discussion focussed on issues around employee engagement.
The roundtable was chaired by News Editor of the Eastern Daily Press, Richard Porritt. Panellists included: Jeanette Wheeler (Partner and Head of Employment and Immigration at Birketts), Lynn Walters (Executive Director, Pure Resourcing), Claudia Roberts (CEO, Zoological Society of East Anglia), Will Bridgman (Managing Director, Warren Services), Tim Smith (CEO, The AFE Group), Paul Lewis (Managing Director, Evander), Sarah Atkins (People and Culture Director, East Anglian Air Ambulance), and Mat Newnham (Partner and Training Principal, Birketts).
Alongside employee engagement, the roundtable covered the impact of the pandemic and inflation on the region’s businesses and how they have restructured and recovered; how they are tackling the drive for diversity, using their vision, mission and purpose to compete for talent; ESG and the need to support employee well-being and use a range of initiatives to engage staff.
Talking about the discussion, Jeanette Wheeler said: “Its clear businesses have largely overcome the chaos of the pandemic and are now driving for growth. However there are challenges with inflation and costs as well as a need for a period of stability for businesses and their staff. There is plenty of positivity about the future and business resilience is something that should be celebrated.
“Employee engagement continues to be a focus for businesses as the battle to attract and retain staff is still a challenge, particularly in manufacturing in a large rural county like Norfolk where things like flexible working and practical issues such as travel logistics and parking costs still impact on job choices. Our discussion found that there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Whether attracting apprentice level candidates to apply for roles, or making longstanding employees feel valued, our workplaces are communities that require different initiatives, programmes, and benefits to make everyone feel valued and included.
“This is where Best Employers can really help. The survey is an insightful tool for organisations to understand what their employees think about the business, what they need and where improvements can be made. I encourage anyone who is looking to up the ante when it comes to employee engagement to take part.”
For more information on Best Employers Eastern Region, visit https://bestemployers.prs.uk.com/