Awards: Developing staff through training

Companies shortlisted for the Best Places to Work in IT 2006 Awards are committed to helping their employees progress their careers

Companies shortlisted for the Best Places to Work in IT 2006 Awards are committed to helping their employees progress their careers

Developing employees' careers is a key factor at organisations that rank as best places to work, and features highly among the firms shortlisted for this year's awards.

There are many ways in which employers can help staff develop their knowledge and skills, and hence their careers.

At construction consultancy Davis Langdon there is a culture of learning. Libraries of books, periodicals, papers and research materials are made available to IT staff. The company also provides online training materials and courses on both technical and non-technical skills, such as Prince2, ITIL and risk and programme management.

At internet registry Nominet UK, anyone working in IT can order any IT book they need, irrespective of cost, and without prior approval, even if another employee already has the book.

Britannia Building Society also provides free books and IT courses, and has 500 licences to allow staff to log onto e-learning websites, either at work or home.

Birmingham Midshires similarly encourages a learning culture, providing 24x7 self-learning materials via its Learn IT resource centre, while at Barclays Services Operation, each member of staff receives £150 a year towards study packages.

IT services firm Cobweb Solutions provides training sessions and workshops within the company, plus external training courses. It also sends senior technical staff on at least one course a year.

At the Corporation of London, there are in-house training facilities, plus IT staff are actively encouraged to acquire skills beyond the remit of their job, such as languages or first aid. It also employs an external customer services consultant to enhance soft skills, such as communication.

Companies House provides a personalised training programme for each IT employee to ensure their skills stay current. Staff are encouraged to manage their development in both technical and soft skills, such as presentation and leadership.

At the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, the development of non-IT skills such as time management is encouraged through training programmes.

A culture of learning; good access to study resources, both at home and at work; the expectation and provision of formal training courses in technical skills; and a fostering of the general skills for broad career development, in areas such as time management, communication and presentation, are all hallmarks of a best place to work. All are highly visible across this year's shortlisted employers.

The shortlist

Final winners of the Best Places to Work in IT 2006 Awards will be selected from the organisations listed below:

Banking and finance

  • Barclays, Service Operations
  • Birmingham Midshires
  • Britannia Building Society
  • Citigroup

Central and local government

  • Companies House
  • City of London
  • Lancashire County Council
  • Land Registry

IT services, including outsource providers

  • Cobweb Solutions
  • ITRM
  • Tessella Support Services

Construction, agriculture and mining

  • Davis Langdon
  • WSP Group

Business services

  • Berwin Leighton Paisner
  • Eaga Partnership
  • OCS Group

Manufacturing and engineering

  • Atkins
  • Kimberly-Clark
  • PepsiCo UK
  • Procter & Gamble

Other public/non-profit sector

  • Legal Services Commission
  • London Business School
  • Nominet UK
  • Royal Society for the Protection of Birds

IT software  and  hardware

  • Compuware
  • Data Connection
  • Smart Human Logistics
  • Welcom Software

Retail, wholesale and distribution

  • Greggs (head office IT)
  • Past Times
  • Tesco Stores

Media, hospitality, entertainment and leisure

  • Chelsea Football Club
  • Yell

Utilities and communications

  • Judges' special award to be announced.


The judging panel

The members of the judging panel for Best Places to Work in IT2006 combine the best of business, IT and employment expertise. They include:


British Computer Society

The BCS provides service and support to the IT community, including IT practitioners and employers of IT practitioners. It also acts to generate public awareness and appreciation of the associated social and economic benefits of IT. The BCS was formed to establish and maintain appropriate standards of education and experience for people working in IT or studying to enter the profession.


IBM Computer Users Association

The IBMCUA is an independent organisation that arranges briefings on topical business-related IT subjects for IT managers and directors. The objective of each event is to provide attendees with information that can be used in their organisation to realise real benefits. Subjects range from the value of specific technologies to the business and how to deal with the latest issues to technical education for IBM iSeries users.


The Corporate IT Forum (Tif)

Tif is a subscriber organisation representing the corporate IT user community. Members, which come from some of the UK's largest blue chip organisations, work together to find practical solutions to everyday issues facing corporate IT, from technical architecture to policy and managing supplier relationships.


Centre of Computing & Social Responsibility

The CCSR is an academic body that carries out research and provides teaching, consultancy and advice to individuals, communities, organisations and governments at local, national and international levels on the actual and potential impact of computing and related technologies on society and citizens.


Institute of Directors

The Institute of Directors provides a professional network that reaches into every corner of the business community. Its global membership spans the spectrum of business leadership, from the largest public companies to the smallest private firms.


UK Oracle User Group

The UKOUG is an independent organisation dedicated to informing and educating Oracle users about Oracle products and services. It provides a forum where users can exchange experiences and influence Oracle management teams.


Awards ceremony

The Best Places to Work in IT 2006 Awards will be announced at a lunch at the Park Lane Hotel, London on 1 March. Places at the event are limited so to ensure your table, contact Nicky Allison on 020-8652 8583, email [email protected]


Computer Weekly's Best Places to Work in IT2006 Awards are organised in association with international recruitment services organisation PSD and are sponsored by consultancy Atkins, Barclays Service Operations and recruitment and resourcing firms Capita Resourcing, Madison Black, ReThink Recruitment and Spring Technology.

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