Heidi Rossi, chief people officer at Ansarada, shares strategies to keep attrition rates low and improve the employee experience.
By Maggie Mancini
As the global labor market continues to tighten and organisations from all parts of the world are working to attract and retain top talent, employee engagement has taken on a new meaning. While companies are looking to determine how best to tailor their approach to engagement to an ever-evolving workforce, employees are increasingly looking to be connected to their organisation’s overall mission.
For Ansarada, an Australia-based SaaS platform that securely manages information for companies and businesses, fostering a positive work environment is essential to attracting and retaining qualified employees. Recent research from the company finds that 89% of its employees feel they are making a difference with their work.
“Personal and professional development are elements of growth that are important for all employees, but when an organisation can strategically and operationally position itself as a force for good, then an egalitarian goal of driving positive corporate and public change allows people to feel better about the growth that they’re part of,” says Heidi Rossi, chief people officer at Ansarada. “This is undoubtedly a more engaging prospect. If a sense of engineering a positive legacy doesn’t exist, then how can one explain to employees that growth for the sake of growth is a good thing? There needs to be a higher purpose, and the work we do on ESG acts as a ‘north star’ that our employees can get behind.”
Additional data from Ansarada finds that the company’s attrition rate is just 12%, and 96% of its employees rate it as a great place to work. When it comes to measuring employee engagement success, Rossi says simple KPI metrics are ubiquitous, and the traditional approach leads employees to feel like commodities.
Rather than using KPI metrics, Ansarada focuses on objectives and key results, which allows the company to blend in not just internal success at the company, but metrics that recognise an employee’s impact on external dynamics and drive growth.
Rossi adds these metrics work to understand how customers are doing, how employees have contributed to the company’s purpose, vision, and mission, and how the employee’s professional attributes contributed to a higher-quality workplace for all employees.
“When you expand your focus beyond simple growth metrics, you nurture leaders, and most leaders here want to stick around and finish the job that Ansarada’s brand promise has laid out,” Rossi says. “Beyond that, being a progressive brand in the tech space, we offer health and wellness programmes, workplace flexibility, and focus on recognition and appreciation, which helps us remain consistently recognised as one of the best places to work, as judged throughout the various jurisdictions where we operate.”
By focussing on its branding, nurturing its talent pool, and investing in a culture of continuous learning, Ansarada can promote 51% of its leadership from within the company. Additionally, research indicates that 91% of Ansarada employees say they have a clear view of where to go in their careers and how to get there.
“Our executive team understands how valuable a happy and healthy team is to our business,” says Rossi. “Strategically, the important process here is to measure and improve our well-being culture through surveys and feedback, because if we don’t score the outcomes, we don’t know which initiatives are helping.”
Rossi says that there is a portfolio of initiatives that Ansarada actively manages, promoting and relegating activities based on effectiveness. For example, the company organises sponsored sports and social events to encourage elements of play and competition. The company also aligns its flexible work environment to suit employees’ individual needs, offers free counseling services, and teaches its employees how to recognise the signs of stress. Ansarada also runs financial literacy workshops, offers access to financial advice, and educates employees about what benefits are offered and how to access them.
“We’ve received workplace awards for many years now and our latest result showed that 96% of our employees rated Ansarada as a great place to work,” Rossi says. “As such, it’s something we’ve taken seriously for a long time, not only because it’s the right thing to do, but we work in the tech space where our competitors understand the importance of their working environment.”
Ansarada is keeping this legacy in mind as the company heads into 2024. Rossi says that the company considers its people strategy one of “continuous improvement,” seeking to build upon what the company has achieved over the last 18 years. In this way, Ansarada sees its evolving HR strategy as an evolution, rather than a year-by-year shift in priorities.