SAS Institute is named best workplace in Sweden for the fifth time
Employee satisfaction successfully maintained during rapid expansion
The Great Place to Work® Institute has chosen SAS, the leader in business analytics software and services, Sweden's best workplace among organizations with up to 250 employees for the fifth time. Mutual respect, openness, teamwork and transparency enabled SAS to maintain employee confidence, even during a period marked by reorganization, recruitment and expansion.
"It's fantastic to once again receive this award," says Kerstin Wejlid, HR manager at SAS. "A contributing factor to SAS Institute's high position year after year, I think, is effective communication. Employees feel recognized and have full confidence that they get the information they need.
"We're thrilled that we managed so well, even after a year of major change within the company, including a new CEO, a new Nordic regional organization and a sharp increase in the number of employees," she adds.
This is the tenth year the Great Place to Work Institute has selected the country's best companies to work for. Selections are based on employee relationships with their management, their work, the overall organization and each other. SAS and the other winners of the Best Workplaces in 2012 were honored 15 March at a gala at Berns in Stockholm.
Kerstin Wejlid believes that employee satisfaction is a leadership issue and that creating a positive corporate culture requires real work. She points out that SAS plans to continue to participate in the Great Place to Works competition.
"It is important that we not rest on our laurels," says Wejlid. "We have to continue working to maintain our culture and our values. Among the cornerstones of that culture are openness, transparency and teamwork. Our employees' input and opions matter, regardless of hierarchy. For us, it is important to be generous with feedback, whether it's praise when someone has done something well or constructive criticism when something could be improved."
Employee job satisfaction is part of the business perspective for SAS worldwide. Founded in the United States in 1976, the company has always held to the philosophy that if you treat employees as if they make a difference to the company, they will make a difference. The heart of the business model is that happy employees create happy customers and ultimately improve business performance. One thing that is special about SAS, according to Kerstin Wejlid, is the genuine respect employees have for each other.
"We are aware that we have different personalities, qualities and experiences that complement each other and that all are equally important for business performance. And it's not just something we say" she adds. "The attitude is supported by concrete action. For example, everyone gets a bonus because everyone contributes to the outcome. It helps establish the team as central and encourages people to help each other. An example of how we promote balance between work, leisure and family is that we rarely schedule meetings before 9:00AM or after 4:00PM, without checking with those affected. We want our employees to be able pick up their children from the nursery on time."
SAS in Sweden started as SAS AB in 1986 and currently employs about 130 in the Stockholm office. Swedish customers include the country's most important companies and organizations. For more information visit: www.sas.com/Sweden
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