Attracting, developing and retaining the right talent is pivotal to the delivery of our strategy.
As a values-driven, people-orientated, progressive organisation, we believe that by creating an environment in which everyone feels valued as an individual and is motivated to give their best, we create stronger, more well-balanced teams.
Policies and management
We focus on strong leadership, proactive and inclusive resourcing, talent development and effective reward and recognition.
Our Resourcing Policy sets out a framework for the recruitment and selection of employees with the right values, behaviours, mix of skills and experience to support business activities. It is underpinned by our Leadership Framework outlines what leadership looks like to us and the capabilities that it comprises, and our Code of Conduct which defines the behaviours we expect and the ethical standards we adhere to.
We celebrate difference and promote inclusivity believing that diversity of thought, approaches and experiences enrich our culture as a business, as set out in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion policy.
Above all, our policies encourage behaving with integrity, and in an honest and fair way.
We make all of our people aware of our policies on joining, within contracts of employment, inductions and new starter packs, and make the policies available through our BMS and intranet. Any new or updated policies are communicated through news alerts. We also mandate training on key themes such as diversity, discrimination, modern slavery, GDPR, anti-bribery and corruption and cyber security.
Employee engagement such as that through surveys and our Employee Forum provide an effective communication channel between our people and the Board, strengthening voice at Board level and ensuring their feedback shapes the way we work.
Our people can raise issues of non-compliance with their line manager or Human Resources (HR). We also have an independent whistleblowing line, which allows individuals to report concerns anonymously. An authority and approvals matrix gives HR and senior management sight of offers of employment and other areas requiring approvals, such as expenses claims. HR input into disciplinary, grievance or redundancy situations ensures that managers follow the appropriate policies. Completion of mandatory training modules is monitored weekly and followed up where needed.
Employee advocacy of our business is a powerful indicator as it measures employee connection and commitment to our company and its culture and goals, with higher scores promoting better performance, innovation, retention and attraction of talent. During the year, we undertook our first employee engagement survey since Galliford Try became a standalone construction group. We had a response rate of 74%, which provides a representative view from employees, and we achieved an employee advocacy score of 85% compared to a sector average of 80%. This figure represents how likely employees are to recommend us as an employer, which helps us benchmark our progress towards becoming a destination company where people aspire to work.
Our overall employee engagement score, which is made up of a number of factors including motivation, commitment to our vision and pride in the company, was also above the sector average at 72%.
Early careers as a % of total employees
Early careers are the focus of many of our recruitment activities, as they allow us to grow our own talent and additionally give us influence over the diversity of our future workforce.
Women as a % of total employees
Attracting more women into our business is key to accessing the skills we need and promoting a more diverse culture, so for our strategy period, we are targeting year-on-year increase for women as a percentage of total employees.
Underpinning all of these areas, is our Retain and Gain approach which focuses on culture, engagement and learning and development of our people.
Gender Pay Reporting
From April 2018, companies have been required to disclose a number of specific gender pay and bonus comparisons on an annual basis. Our last report provided our data as at 5 April 2021, which therefore excludes our acquired companies in the year. For the reported year, the proportion of males and females across Galliford Try remained stable with 23% of our employees being female and 77% being male. Our mean gender pay gap remained stable at 28.8% as did our median gender pay gap at 33.8% (2020: 32.2%). Our mean and median gender pay gaps for our early years population are both negative, standing at -10.8% and -7.8% respectively, which reflects the gender split of talent joining our business at an entry level, with the ambition of developing this talent into senior roles over time. Our mean and median gender bonus gaps both reduced, from 65.5% to 49.1% and 49.9% to 28.8%, respectively.
The results from the employee engagement survey demonstrated we have the right culture. Our highest scoring area across the survey was health, safety and ethics, where we rated 93% and 99% of people responded favourably to the statement that we give health and safety high priority. The highest scores compared to the industry were our commitment to social responsibility at 96%, having a vision that motivates our people at 94%, and their ability to have a say in matters that involve them 93%. These highlights mirror the importance we place across these areas.
Developing and maintaining the right culture is a fundamental strength of our business and so we continue to place a focus on it, leading from the top. During the year, we restructured our inductions for new starters, so that from the very start of their career with us, they learn what our business represents and what we prioritise. Our inductions are comprehensive and comprise three sessions, the first of which is led by a member of the Executive Board. They cover our business, culture, health and safety, our business processes, strategy and technical approach.
We refreshed our Code of Conduct which sets out what doing the right thing means to us by outlining our strong ethical standards and providing a framework to ensure we behave in a way that reflects our purpose, vision and values including our environmental, social and governance responsibilities. This included encouraging our teams to speak up about any potential non-compliance with our policies to line managers, senior management, our HR or Legal teams or through our independent, anonymous whistleblowing facility
Skills and development
Our business is committed to supporting employees at all levels to fulfil their potential. All employees are encouraged to participate in our Performance and Development Review process, which takes place once a year, and is supported by ongoing development discussions and training. Our approach takes the shape of Career Paths, which provide a range of options to support employees to develop the skills they need to build their career with us at their own pace. Career paths are designed to support succession planning and link to our Leadership Framework which defines the capabilities and behaviours that are important to us. Complementing this is our GT Academy, an online platform of learning and development tools and resources, and our Lunch & Learns, which are short, impactful webinars open to everyone, covering topics from personal skills development to business-specific subjects all hosted by subject matter experts.
We delivered a total of 10,588 training days during the year (2021: 6,353), equivalent to 3.3 days per employee (2021: 2.3). The increase was partly a result of postponed courses due to lockdown and being able to resume delivery of in-person training. New mandatory programmes for commercial and project teams also contributed to the increase.