Living our Values
At Morrisons we believe that everyone has talent, and bringing the best out of our people is at the heart of our success as a company.
Therefore, we put significant focus on growing our own people, developing them from the shop floor to the top floor of our business, and helping them perform at their best.
On the shop floor, the opportunities begin immediately. New store recruits can achieve a QCF (NVQ) Level 2 Retail Skills qualification (equivalent to five GCSEs at grade C or above) while doing their day job as part of The Morrisons Academy. Last year nearly 48,000 colleagues were successfully accredited with this nationally recognised qualification.
This process ensures that Morrisons has more traditional craft trained people than any other retailer, something that is really valued by our customers. At management level our 'Coaching for Performance' Programme, which translates parallels of winning sports teams into success in the business environment, enables our leaders to become great coaches who can maximise the potential and performance of their teams. More than 1,000 of our senior leaders will undertake the programme in the next 12 months.
At the top floor, our Advanced Leadership Programme prepares our senior management team for progression into the executive directors of the future. In 2010, 20 senior managers joined this programme and three of them have recently progressed to the Management Board, including Mark Harrison, our new Group Retail Director (Designate), who started his career with Morrisons twenty-five years ago on the shop floor.
Mark's example, and the 80% of our other employees that are promoted from within, is proof that our shop floor to top floor approach is working. Our people philosophy makes sound business sense too: in 2010, our approach to recognising talent, rewarding hard work and creating opportunities for progression saw productivity increase by 7%, labour turnover decrease by 6% and a 0.3% fall in absence, resulting in an £8m cost saving to the business.
Not only does our commitment to growing our own talent make financial sense, it also ensures that the traditions and values that have made Morrisons a great company endure, and that these qualities are deeply engrained throughout our organisation. These solid foundations will ensure we grow our talented team and deliver the Morrisons difference - and a high performing business - for years to come.
Investing in the future
With the intention of creating our leaders of the future, this year we launched our school leavers programme, welcoming 18-year-olds onto our Morrisons Manufacturing Sponsored Degree Programme. While working in Morrisons Manufacturing business, they will also study for a BSc (Hons) in Management and Business at the Bradford University School of Management. It's an approach that gives our students the opportunity to gain industry relevant skills that are aligned with our business objectives.
Launched at a time when students are facing challenging economic conditions and the threat of rising tuition fees, our 'debt-free degrees' offer a genuine opportunity for young people to fulfil their potential, while receiving a competitive salary, payment of their degree fees and excellent training.
We will support more intakes in 2011 and in 2012.
Aiding social mobility
Our belief that everyone has talent, combined with our aim to build long lasting relationships with our local communities, has led to a working partnership with CREATE, an award winning Leeds-based charity supporting disadvantaged people. Through our association with CREATE, we've already started to recruit and train homeless people into our business. The jobs we're providing will get their lives back on track and create loyal and committed team members. It's our aim to provide 1,000 jobs through our partnership with CREATE.
Last year, we signed up over 8,500 apprentices. By the end of 2011, we will train a further 18,000 apprentices, making Morrisons the UK's largest modern apprenticeship provider.
Joining our team
Last year we opened 14 new stores, creating 3,500 jobs. We also welcomed over 800 new colleagues to our team following our acquisition of two manufacturing facilities. Early introductions to Morrisons, coupled with honest communications from our managers, and robust induction processes, helped to ensure a smooth transition for our new people.
Attracting external talent
We are committed to growing our own people and our plans will ensure we have a strong talent pool for the future. At times, however, we do need to seek talent from outside the organisation, largely to fill new skills areas. Our reputation for looking after our people, as evidenced in The Grocer Gold Awards 2010 when we were named Employer of the Year, ensures we can attract and recruit the best talent in the industry from within and outside the UK. This year we have successfully filled a number of key positions with people from leading organisations.
This year we will create a Centre of Excellence for Coaching, in partnership with Leeds Metropolitan University and Leeds Carnegie, who enjoy an international reputation for sports coaching excellence. This partnership will provide every manager across the business with a consistent set of core leadership and coaching skills. By providing managers with the skills to bring the best out of their people, we will help everyone in the business to perform to their best everyday: something that our customers will recognise in the service they receive and the shopping experience they enjoy.
We are also committed to more than doubling our number of female senior managers, so that by 2014 we will have increased the female representation on the company's Senior Management Group from 13% to 30%. We have established a Steering group to drive our detailed action plans which, along with coaching and mentoring, will help more women maximise their careers at Morrisons.