Engaging our team
Engagement is about strengthening the spirit and capturing the minds of team members in a way that contributes to our overall business performance. An engaged team is realized when our team members truly believe in and are proud of the company they work for, and see a strong connection between their daily contributions and TELUS’ success.
Among our many efforts to be an employer of choice, TELUS invests in the development of our team and is focused on creating a workplace shaped by team member feedback. Despite economic challenges and intense competition, TELUS is in a position of strength and leadership thanks to the spirit of our team members. We are seeing growing momentum throughout the organization as team members rally together to deliver future friendly® experiences to our customers and create a behavioural paradigm that differentiates us from the competition. As a result, 2011 was an exceptional year, experiencing positive momentum across the key areas of our business.
Our efforts were evident in the results of Pulsecheck, our team member engagement survey that has been conducted by our third party survey administrator Aon Hewitt. In 2011, overall engagement increased from 57 per cent to 70 per cent. This remarkable 13 percentage point increase elevates TELUS into the highest engagement level, the best employer zone. These exceptional Pulsecheck results are reflective of the TELUS teams’ passionate commitment to growth.
Team members and retirees also continued TELUS’ legacy of volunteerism and charitable giving to the communities where we live, work and serve, donating more than $7.1 million to more than 2,900 registered charities, over 555,800 volunteer hours and more than 63,500 care items in 2011 alone.
Moving forward, we will continue to deploy industry-leading communications products and services to our customers, help build healthier communities and enhance our work environment through the continued roll-out of programs such as Work Styles. In 2012, TELUS plans to raise engagement and support team members by:
- Improving work processes with team member input that should positively impact customer experience
- Delivering human resources expertise to enhance business operational effectiveness
- Providing financial and career support to team members displaced by organizational changes
- Supporting team member wellness and work life balance through access to support services and wellness practitioners, health screening and improvement programs, our Active Living program and various health pilots
- Helping team members better manage their careers with tools such as the career web portal and offering learning opportunities through social media
- Furthering the adoption of the Work Styles program, which enables team members to work when and where they can be most effective, while reducing costs and environmental impacts
- Fostering a workplace that is inclusive and respectful of diversity, maintaining the momentum of the Diversity and Inclusiveness Council and five team member resource groups (Connections for women, Spectrum for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning team members, Eagles for team members with Aboriginal backgrounds, TELUS Abilities Network for team members with different abilities and a New Canadian resource group supporting new Canadian team members)
- Providing ongoing opportunities for team members to give back to the communities where they live, work and serve through the Team TELUS Cares programs.
We can build more productive workplaces and create stronger connections with our customers and communities by leveraging our passion for growth. We do this by:
- Soliciting suggestions for improvement and measuring the impact of past programs through our annual Pulsecheck survey and a survey of senior leaders on human resources practices
- Hosting team member forums that encourage collaboration on topics such as leadership and engagement
- Working with union leaders from the Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU), Syndicat Québecois des employés de TELUS (SQET) and the Syndicat des agents de maîtrise de TELUS (SAMT) unions through the Common Interest Forum
- Engaging union representatives on topics such as employment equity and health and safety
- Offering business process improvement programs to leverage the knowledge and passion of our team
- Providing social media tools such as wikis, blogs and video sharing, enabling team members to more effectively collaborate across the organization.
We have a long-standing commitment to protecting and advancing human rights as outlined in our Ethics policy and reflected in our Respectful Workplace, Employment Equity and diversity practices. In 2010, TELUS became a signatory of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) reflecting our desire to advance UNGC principles in the workplace and beyond. This commitment continues; and more detailed information is available in Communication of Progress.
We believe in providing inclusive and respectful workplaces for team members in Canada and our global operations. Within our international operations, we follow local legislation that protects human rights. Our policy is to go beyond what is required by local laws to protect our team members’ rights.
Within Canada we comply with local laws and participate in groups such as Assisting Local Leaders with Immigrant Employment Strategies, which supports efforts in Canadian cities to successfully adapt and implement programs that further the employment of skilled immigrants. We also work with agencies, such as the Edmonton Region Immigrant Employment Council, and conduct annual meetings with Human Resources and Skills Development Canada and the Canadian Human Rights Commission.
Our commitment to broader diversity goals dates back to 2004 when we first opened the TELUS Respectful Workplace Office. This office is dedicated to educating team members about behaviours that support equal opportunity for all and resolving workplace issues when they occur.
The Diversity and Inclusiveness volunteer council prepares an annual diversity report which highlights workplace programs, affinity marketing, community investments and sponsorships in support of diversity at work and in our communities.
Achieving success through spirited teamwork
The success of TELUS depends on the abilities, experience and engagement of its team members. We live our values daily, in interactions with our colleagues, customers and communities, as we deliver on our brand promise – the future is friendly®. In 2011, our team increased its determination to serve our customers and communities and demonstrate compassion for others by strengthening our focus on our customers' experiences and participating in our community giving programs.
At the end of 2011, the Company employed approximately 41,100 TELUS team members (40,100 full-time equivalent or FTE employees) across a wide range of operational functions domestically and certain functions internationally. Contact centre operations at our Canadian and international locations support business process outsourcing services for our business customers. The Company also uses non-Canadian located TELUS International resources for certain internal operations to improve efficiency and to allow Canadian operations to focus on value-added services.
The Company expects that it has adequate employee resources to cover ongoing retirement, and ready access to labour in Canada and, for call centres and specific support functions, various locations internationally. TELUS complements its workforce with a contingent of contractors and consultants who provide unique skills to assist us in delivering a strong customer experience. This can range from providing constant network coverage to enhancements to systems and tools that our customers use.
Approximately 12,800 team members are covered by a collective agreement. The collective agreement with the Syndicat des agents de maîtrise de TELUS (SAMT), representing approximately 510 members, expired on December 31, 2011. The collective agreement with the Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU), covering approximately 11,250 employees, was successfully settled in 2011 and is in effect through 2015. Retention and hiring issues are expected to remain due to an increase in the number of competitors. TELUS aims to attract and retain key employees through both monetary and non-monetary approaches, striving to protect and improve engagement levels.
TELUS has in the last two years made discretional additional pension contributions of $300 million to maintain a strong defined benefit pension funding position (for participating team members) which is among the best in corporate Canada.
TELUS International employs approximately 13,300 team members. This is an increase of 4,900 in 2011 due largely to the purchase of control of Transactel. TELUS International delivers world-class contact centre, information technology and business process outsourcing solutions to some of the world’s largest and most respected corporations in the financial services, consumer electronics, telecommunications and energy and utilities industries.
When crisis strikes colleagues or customers, TELUS team members rally together. Many residents of Slave Lake, Alberta, lost their homes and belongings in a devastating forest fire last May and endured flooding from heavy rain. TELUS team members donated more than $70,000 to the Red Cross relief efforts. Additionally, teams in Fort McMurray and Grande Prairie demonstrated compassion by providing additional support to our customers and team members in the Slave Lake area during their time of need.
TELUS team members responded with creativity and considerable expertise, and were able to maintain service at a microwave relay site on Copper Mountain in December 2011. Bad weather damaged our radio antennae, which provides phone and Internet service to the entire B.C. northwest coast, including the Coast Guard, RCMP, health authorities, multiple First Nations communities, NavCanada and the Department of National Defence.