Winners of Top Employer Awards 2013 announced has announced the winners of its fourth annual Top Employer Awards, celebrating the leading companies in family friendly working.

The Awards, sponsored by last year’s winner Unilever, were presented at a ceremony at London’s Soho Hotel on 5 November where the keynote speaker was minister for equalities Jo Swinson.

Winner of the Overall Top Employer award was Atkins. It was praised by judges for the range of initiatives it was undertaking on flexible working and women’s career progression in a tough economic environment and a male-dominated sector.

Awards were presented for eight other categories, including a new category on Career Progression, introduced to reflect moves to increase the female pipeline as a result of targets for women on boards:

Top Employers Award for Innovation in Flexible Working – sponsored by McDonald’s Restaurants Limited – went to Atkins. The judges praised strong case studies, a high level of flexible working among men, female leadership targets and a clear drive and strong business case for diversity in a sector where this was not the norm.

The Top Employers Award for Career Progression went to Royal Mail Group. The judges felt the winner made a strong and public case for its programme to improve the female talent pipeline. It had good representation of women in senior roles, there was work on career progression at all levels and a new leadership programme and workshops which gave women the tools they needed to succeed. The organisation was also praised for its outreach work in schools and universities.

The Top Employers Award for Best for Dads, sponsored by IG Group, went to the London School of Economics and Political Science. The judges felt the winner had built on its innovative programme for dads and were impressed that some 37% of male employees were working flexibly in an environment which was often inflexible and that workshops for dads were offered to partners of staff who worked in other organisations.

The Top Employers Award for Talent Attraction, sponsored by last year’s winner CA Technologies, went to Barclays. The judges felt the winner’s outreach work was very strong and praised the fact that they sponsored awards and projects that promoted or supported women in the workplace. They built relationships with prospective employees at an early stage and openly advertised flexible jobs.

Winner of the Top Employers Award for Family Support went to Danone. The judges felt the winner of this award had a comprehensive approach to family support, covering adoption policy, flexible working for all, family days, retirement policy, grandparent leave, surrogacy leave and stress and well being.

The Top Employers Award for SMEs with 1-25 employees went to Mahon Digital Marketing Ltd. The judges praised the winner for its impressive remote working model and the fact that it worked on an international scale. They made a good business case for hiring parents. The organisation showed that it didn’t matter where people were based in a successful flexible business model.

Top Employers Award for SMEs with over 26-250 employees went to Brand Learning.

The judges praised the winner’s commitment to diversity at board level, its family events, employee assistance programme and coaching and counselling provision. Its directors were walking the talk in a sector which was highly competitive and where there is a long hours culture.

The Working Mums Champion Award – sponsored by Anna Rasmussen Ltd – went to Clare Bishop of Addison Lee. The judges felt the winner stood out for her commitment to driving through an innovative programme which got people talking about the issues facing working mums in the workplace. Her influence went beyond her own company and she had caught the public imagination.

The Award judges were: Gillian Nissim, Founder of; Cary L. Cooper, Distinguished Professor of Organisational Psychology and Health, University of Lancaster, Jennifer Liston-Smith, Director of Coaching & Consultancy at My Family Care, Dave Dunbar, Head of BT Flexible Working Services and Clare Kelliher, Professor of Work and Organisation at Cranfield School of Management.

The judges took part in a lively Q & A Panel, which was sponsored by William Hill.

There was also a networking session where winners and shortlisted entrants were able to swap ideas. Media partners for the event were The FIRM and Anywhere Working.

Gillian Nissim, Founder of [|, said: “Entries for this year’s Awards were very impressive and the judging process was often very close as a result. We were particularly struck this year by the range of different employers doing innovative work in their sector and clearly grasping the business case for doing so. We hope the Awards will inspire other employers to follow their lead.” is a B2B online publication for the UK business community.
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