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FedEx scores a Top Ten Employers hat-trick

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Third success: FedEx Express senior manager for the British Caribbean islands Chris Heslop, centre, receives the plaque for the first-placed organisation in The Bottom Line Top Ten Employers awards from Bermuda Press (Holdings) CEO Jonathan Howes and Arthur Wightman, CEO of PwC Bermuda, the survey’s sponsors, in the awards ceremony at the Hamilton Princess and Beach Club yesterday

Courier firm FedEx Express delivered the goods in flawless fashion at The Bottom Line Top Ten Employers awards yesterday — for the third time in a row.

FedEx saw off strong competition to claim the first place from the sister publication of The Royal Gazette.

FedEx senior manager for the British Caribbean islands Chris Heslop said: “It is our third time in a row — but it’s really about our people, service, profit philosophy — the idea if we take care of our people they will provide better service, which in return gives better profits.

“Everything we do as a company revolves around that.”

Mr Heslop accepted the top award at a ceremony at the Hamilton Princess and Beach Club yesterday morning, flanked by staff members.

He told guests at the event: “I brought five of our employees up here because really it’s all about these guys.”

Second place went to a new player on the Bermuda business stage — Hamilton Insurance Group and Hamilton Re, founded less than two years ago by industry veteran Brian Duperreault.

Hamilton Re chief executive officer Kathleen Reardon, who accepted the award, said: “What we’re doing is a little bit new and different. To be recognised right at the start is a great honour.”

She added: “We are really making a work environment that is conducive to a culture where employees have a say in how the company is shaped — it’s not a hierarchical structure, but one where information can be shared for the betterment of the company and the industry as a whole.”

IT company Fireminds rounded out the top three in its first entry into the competition.

Company CEO Michael Branco said: “Our main mantra is innovation in technology and taking that to each employees and helping them realise their full potential and learn new things in roles they are in.

“That’s been the growth for our people and the growth for us. I push the guys hard to get to their full potential, but that’s because we love what we do in technology.”

Stevedoring Services — part of Polaris Holding Co. Ltd and the only traditional industrial firm to make the list — came in at number eight at its first attempt. Senior management, however, were taking care of business at its annual general meeting when the awards were presented and were unable to be present.

But Polaris CEO Warren Jones said yesterday: “It was the staff at one of our regular meetings who asked why we weren’t involved in this.

“We are very pleased. There’s been a lot of work over the last two years as it relates to re-engineering and in particular working on relations with the union. This award is a good sign — we have more work to do, but it’s a good benchmark.”

Bermuda Press (Holdings) CEO Jonathan Howes said: “The companies that are with us today, the Top Ten, are what I like to think are the companies that are best at managing people. They excel at taking their people from place A to place B.

“This year we have four new companies in the Top Ten, companies I don’t believe have participated before, if I’m not mistaken. We encourage them to continue to participate — we love the excitement about where people are going to finish.”

And Mr Howes thanked the survey’s sponsors, professional services company PwC, and Global Research, which carried out the extensive selection process, which involved input not only from employers, but their staff as well.

PwC Bermuda leader Arthur Wightman told the winners: “We’ve been part of this — and delighted to be so — for a number of years because we consider it to be so important.

“Excellence in how you manage, nurture, develop and reward your people is so important. Very many congratulations to you all.”

He added that PwC’s motto was “we create the opportunity of a lifetime”.

He added: “We spend every hour of our time ensuring we deliver that to our people. We do so because it’s the right thing for them, but a happy, optimistic workforce is one that will drive commercial success for that organisation.”

He added afterwards: “As proud sponsors of these awards, now in their seventh year, we are pleased to recognise Bermuda’s most attractive employers — those who offer exceptional places to work. We would like to commend each of the Top Ten winners for their outstanding commitment to their people by offering the best professional development opportunities, benefits and rewards strategies.

“At PwC, our people are at the heart of our business strategy and success. Our core values of excellence, teamwork and leadership underpin our culture and define how we deliver value to our clients and focus on offering the opportunity of a lifetime to our people.

“As a firm we want to help our employees discover and develop their talents.”

The Bottom Line editor Jonathan Kent told the gathering: “What you guys have proved is that you are exceptional employers and a credit to our community.”

He added: “The Bottom Line is pleased and proud once again to honour the best of Bermuda and highlight their achievements in providing top-notch working environments for their staff.”

Guest speaker Claudia Philipsz-Jones, a partner and practice leader of the HR consulting and outsourcing team at Expertise, said: “Reading about each of your organisations, it’s clear there is a theme of success for your risk and vision.

“There is teamwork, communication, a culture everyone can understand and appreciate and a sense of appreciation.

“Employers understand that to lead the marketplace they must first lead the workplace. May your good example as employers inspire other employers.”

The Royal Bermuda Regiment gained an honourable mention after just missing out on a place in the Top Ten in its first entry into the survey.

Regiment Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Michael Foster-Brown said: “I am delighted that the Regiment has ranked so highly among the various multinational companies represented, and note we are the only government department listed.

“We work hard to make service rewarding and satisfying, and whilst recognising there is more work to be done in some areas, this survey and our current high retention rates indicate we are being successful.”

See more pictures from the event under the Photo Gallery on The Royal Gazette website at www.royalgazette.com.

Top Ten Employers Award Ceremony: Hamilton Re. (Photograph by Akil Simmons)Runners-up: Kathleen Reardon, CEO of Hamilton Re, with the plaque for second place, alongside colleagues, from the left, Jonathan Reiss, Victoria Guest, and Bob Deutsch
Third place: IT firm Fireminds, who came third in this year's Top Ten Employers awards, celebrate with company boss Michael Branco, centre
<p>The Top Ten</p>

Bermuda’s Top Ten employers were honoured at a special awards ceremony yesterday.

And the winners were a mix of the old and the new, with some familiar companies and some newcomers.

FedEx Express completed a hat-trick of first places — but other made their first entry, like the Hamilton Insurance Group/ Hamilton Re, who came second.

Regulars in the Top Ten — like global drinks giant Bacardi and insurance companies BF&M and Argus — maintained their record of achievement in the awards.

The full Top Ten is:

1. FedEx Express

2. Hamilton Insurance Group/Hamilton Re

3. Fireminds

4. Argus

5. Bacardi

6. CellOne

7. BF&M

8. Stevedoring Services

9. Ariel Re

10. Butterfield & Vallis

Honourable mention: The Royal Bermuda Regiment