Investor relations

Promote a values-based corporate culture (QCA Principle 8)

The Board places emphasis on its values-based corporate culture and ethical behaviour which are crucial to the Group’s reputation in the highly regulated field in which it operates. The Corporate Responsibility Report (Corporate Responsibility Reports) provides more details and Principle 3 and also talks about our responsibilities to wider stakeholders. The Group’s success depends on maintaining a supportive, innovative and can-do culture when working with suppliers and customers.

The Group manages a highly regarded quality management system which has a very strong influence on culture. The Group’s competency framework sets values-based expectations at all levels in terms of the way we communicate and behave towards each other and external stakeholders. Our competency framework links to our performance management system and, in turn, to our rewards strategy.

The Group operates a flat structure with all staff having the ability to discuss matters with Directors and senior managers. The management teams meet regularly to promote communications and teamwork. The majority of projects take a team-based approach. Staff participate through virtual teams as well as regular office visits. Recruitment practises are heavily focused on recruiting people with similarly strong values. We have expanded our HR team to ensure a consistently open and ethical approach to recruitment, management and employee communication throughout our offices.

The Group has established a Management Charter which formalises and clarifies expectations that managers at all levels take responsibility for supporting and promoting an ethical values-based culture. Senior managers are coached in the development and maintenance of an open and ethical culture. This Charter forms the basis of our management development programme and is part of management objectives.

The Group has taken further steps to promote a supportive culture. These include improving healthcare benefits, training mental health first aiders, subscription for employees to Employee Assistance Programmes (e.g. Thrive: Mental Wellbeing app) and team building events.

The highly skilled and diverse nature of the Group influences culture which, at the most recent review, is characterised by:

  • Qualifications, with 81% (2021: 84%) of staff having higher education qualifications including Degrees, Masters and Doctorates as well as Chartered Accountants and MBAs, with the majority of staff having multiple qualifications.
  • Gender split, with 49%:51% (2021: 47%:53%) Male:Female.
  • Different nationalities, with 35 (2021: 39) different countries represented.