Size: 50-99 staff
Temporary Traffic Management (TTM) is an industry that every New Zealander out on the road comes into contact with every single day. We’re talking about the plethora of orange road cones, stop/go people and traffic diversions we encounter on our way to our destinations. However, these small inconveniences are of significant importance not only to our growing infrastructure, but to the health and safety of all road workers and road users. That’s where we come in. Parallaxx is all about creating harm-free environments for peace of mind construction. Our team of exceptional people facilitate temporary traffic management solutions.
Parallaxx is a company that highly values its team members. They have taken an evidence based approach to design and implement an innovative program that has significantly contributed to the health and wellbeing of their team members. Their wellbeing program has contributed to Parallaxx's overall company strategy, retention strategy, and most importantly, the mental health and wellbeing of their team. The program encourages team members to set goals; Parallaxx then supports team members to achieve them.
Background on situation and opportunity
Prior to the People Manager starting at Parallaxx there was no formal wellbeing program in place. However, a culture of valuing team members and caring for them was already firmly established. Maintaining and building on this culture was key to the programs success. Good physical and mental health is important; and we wanted to find ways we could support our team members to meet their health and wellbeing goals.
We are deeply committed to the health, safety and wellbeing of our employees. We take this very seriously and encourage our staff to take care of themselves both at work and at home. Our health, safety and wellbeing philosophy revolves around team members keeping not only for themselves safe, but also other team members. This encourages collaboration on health and safety issues and contributes to our company culture. We wanted a program that would align with our strategic pillar ‘The people who work for us will grow and be more successful in their lives’. When designing the Parallaxx wellbeing program, current research indicated that group wellbeing activities, although fun and informative, are ineffective at creating long term change (WHO, 2010). Our program therefore involves two parts, team based activities such as wellbeing workshops, team building activities and fun competitions, and our main component of the program, 1 on 1 coaching sessions that are tailored to each individual depending on their needs. The primary focus area of the program is individual to each person and measured by the achievement of their goals. Our team is surveyed annually to ensure the program is meeting their needs and to gather suggestions on other activities the team would like to do in the future. To support our wellbeing program, we have a robust wellbeing policy in place that is reviewed annually and audited every 6 months. We also provide a range of free services to our team including; an employee assistance program, financial planning / budgeting assistance, ergonomic assessments, a social club, flu vaccinations and regular team get togethers.
We have two wellbeing coaches, one in New Zealand and one in the Philippines. Both have been trained in solution-focused brief therapy. This places focus on a person's present and future circumstances and goals. Sessions involve reflection on positive experiences and how current skills and relationships can help achieve any identified goals. We use a series of scaling questions to help team members explore areas of their lives they may want to make changes in. Some team members already have goals they are working towards. No matter what a persons goals are, we provide support where we can. If required, we refer our team members for specialist services. So far, these have included biometric scanning services and consults with a nutritionist. Our wellbeing coaching program also provides the opportunity to be paired with an ‘accountability buddy’. These are people with similar goals who check in with each other regularly and provide each other with encouragement. One set of our accountability buddies have taken this further by regularly attending the gym together, and a small group in the Philippines are working out together using exercise videos online. Another group of team members have established an online accountability chat group. In addition to our coaching program, we also run monthly wellbeing competitions, awareness activities and host guest speakers. These events are chosen by our wellbeing committee made up of team members from both New Zealand and the Philippines.
Engagement and communication
Our wellbeing program is promoted on our Sharepoint page, by emails, in our wellbeing newsletter, and in our online Wellbeing chat. Managers and team leaders are encouraged to lead by example and promote team member wellbeing. Please see the attached examples. Managers, team leaders and team members (depending on role) are provided mental health training around a variety of topics. Our training offerings will soon be expanding with the creation of our new learning framework and system.
Our 1:1 coaching program has been well received by the team. Throughout the past year, our team members have set over 200 goals, with many short-term goals already achieved. Goals vary a lot with both short- and long-term goals set. Regular follow ups are held to track progress and assist team members as required. A proportion of the wellbeing budget is set aside to fund workshops, equipment or services a team member may need to help achieve their goals whether it be getting fitter, learning to cook healthier, taking up a new hobby, saving for a house deposit, spending more time with their family or any other goal they may have. We have seen excellent results achieved, however due to confidentially requirements, we are unable to provide specific details. These results align with another of our strategic pillars ‘Empowering people to do great things’. Our wellbeing program contributes to our retention strategy. Two of our values, Family – People who work with us with grow and be more successful in their lives and Growth – Continually learning and innovating, also contribute to our retention strategy framework. This is the driving force behind our strong team culture that the directors, mangers, and team leaders have instilled in both the Filipino and New Zealand teams. The staff turnover rate across both countries remains low with a combined voluntary turnover rate of 2.67% in the past 12 months. This is a decrease of 1.13% compared with previous 12 months. By comparison, as reported by the Lawson Williams Consulting Group (2020), the average New Zealand voluntary turnover rate from January to June 2020 was 6.3%.
Spanning across two countries - New Zealand and the Philippines – Parallaxx is proud to be an inclusive employer made up of a multi-cultural team where diversity is both embraced and celebrated. We actively recruit talent that is not only excellent but also diverse. We find that this results in a more innovative, resilient, and productive team. Being the best person for the job means one will also bring an aspect of perspective currently not available within Parallaxx. Depending on where a team member is based, our induction program provides information regarding Filipino or New Zealand culture. When team members visit either country, they are invited to immerse themselves in that countries culture by participating in social outings, sightseeing, and trying local foods with the team. Our popular Friday fun quiz allows team members to submit questions about their own cultures, traditional foods, and other interesting facts. As part of our wellbeing program, we promote and celebrate a variety of awareness weeks and cultural celebrations. Please see the attachment for feedback on diversity.
Innovation and creativity
Our 1 on 1 coaching program is an initiative we have not seen elsewhere. By integrating solution-focused brief therapy into our coaching program, we have seem team members achieve amazing things both at work and in their personal lives. We plan to develop an online system for our wellbeing coaching program in the future.
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Jordan Tremayne, Customer and Quality Manager (Parallaxx)
021 132 80235 • [email protected]
Hannah Young, People Manager (Parallaxx)
0211596179 • [email protected]