The problem

The architects BPTW wanted to engage more of their staff in developing the business, so using the existing ISO 9001 management system as a bedrock, a decision was made for the company to become recognised as an “Investor in People”. 

The client

BPTW is an award winning mid-sized firm of architects and quantity surveyors, specialising in social housing and the regeneration of large inner London estates. The practice was formed in 1988 and has grown steadily and were now structured into five architectural teams, a QS team, and various IT and support teams.

The background 

The relationship between BPTW and Statius is a long one: Mark Bottomley, partner at BPTW, initially commissioned Statius to assist with the implementation of the BS 5750 standard in 1993. The Company was assessed by NQA passing on the first attempt.

The solution 

The initial task was to develop the recent strategic review into a formal business plan. Two critical issues identified during the review related to marketing and internal communications and, as a result, a marketing team was set up to extend the firm’s marketing capability. The team has since created an extensive marketing plan which is reviewed and updated quarterly. A number of internal communications activities have also been developed, specifically; job competences were developed for different positions and grades; a revised appraisal process is now used to ensure staff development is linked to job competencies and business objectives, and critical reviews of the design activities were extended to allow greater involvement in the creative processes.

The outcome 

The organisation’s culture has changed dramatically and it is now joked that BPTW actually stands for “Best Place to Work”.

Over 50% of staff are now involved in the annual business planning process Annual staff turnover has significantly reduced. 82% of staff now firmly believe that managers are committed to training and development, up from only 28% before the initiative. A committed and loyal workforce. Comments made during the assessment include “I like it here, all my friends are here!” and “People listen to you”. The Company has at its disposal a very simple to understand and unambiguous policy manual and set of procedures that reflect what the Company sees as its ‘best practice’.