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Hunter Dunning shortlisted for Employer of the Year Award

Observer Business Excellence Awards 2019

Today we received news that we have been shortlisted by the Observer Business Excellence Awards, for the Employer of the Year award. The Winner will be announced on the 19th June at a black tie dinner at the Hilton Avisford Park Hotel Arundel.

Now in its 9th year, the Observer Business Excellence Awards is an annual event in celebration of local businesses in and around Chichester. From growth to innovation, individuals to whole corporations, each category celebrates a unique accomplishment.

Hunter Dunning is humbled to be shortlisted for the Employer of the Year Award. According to the Business awards website, the Employer of the Year Award is “an award for a business that has great staff relations, good staff retention, with excellent training and who cares for their employees. The best company to work for!”.

See more about the Observer Business Awards here.

What we are all about

As a recruitment agency, we believe it is important to nurture the people working with you and that looking after your staff is paramount to a successful business. We practice what we preach to this effort by applying our ethos internally as well as passing our values on to our customers.

For Hunter Dunning, our retention isn’t just based on what incentives can be thrown at our employees. It’s more about understanding company culture and staff engagement – so much so we even wrote an article about the importance of company culture here. Each staff member here feels valued, has autonomy within their role and a voice within the company.

As a sales based company we do run regular incentive schemes but we also have both company and staff initiated social events from paintball and end of year parties, to simple Friday evening drinks. Its no wonder our staff retention rates are much higher than similar companies.

In the last 6 months the company had moved into a new office space in order to both accommodate the growing business requirements as well as make the space a more comfortable environment to work in. Even the office pup has her own space with a comfy basket! The staff “chillout” room is a space the staff can get away from their desks and the local coffee shop is frequented for meetings too.

No staff member feels like “just a worker” and everyone is given the opportunity to work flexibly, training is given where required and individuals are offered progression opportunities as applicable.

Here’s what some of our staff have to say about us:

Fern Hutchinson (Marketing & Finance Assistant)

“When I joined Hunter Dunning in 2016 I hadn’t had very positive experiences with previous employers, so when I joined Hunter Dunning I felt like royalty. The Directors are friendly, welcoming and really supportive of their staff and development. I’ve learnt so much from Joe the MD and have had a lot of support when going through some struggles in personal life and also going on to have a baby. As well as a nice work environment were always treated to nice great staff works parties at Goodwood as well as going for a drink down the pub to reward our hard efforts.

I’ve now changed from a recruiter to working in the finance and marketing departments part time and thoroughly enjoying work which I don’t think many people can say.

Joe has been so understanding about my situation with my husband’s shift work and has kindly let me work flexible hours in order to work the hours required and also work around my personal life. I feel so lucky.”

Charlotte Lambert (Architecture Recruitment Consultant)

“When I first joined I was going through a very bad time in my life. I was so scared of initially speaking with Joe as it was my first week, but once I did I felt so much better! Joe is honestly the best boss I have ever had, he listens to your problems, sits down with you to find a solution that will work for both, he is sooo understandable and more like a friend rather than a boss.

I love working here, everyone is super friendly and approachable and I wouldn’t change them ever.”

Miranda Butler (Architecture Recruitment Consultant)

“Hunter Dunning has been so supportive of my progression, both personally and professionally. Nothing is too much trouble, for example needing time off or to alter working hours for extra-curricular activities they were more than happy to accommodate, which really makes a difference in motivating staff. Additionally, there is always training or performance feedback available, in order to help you to achieve more at work, for example in my year and a half with the company I have moved onto managing a more challenging desk, with the support and guidance of management.

The company also allows me to get involved in the business, outside of my job role contributions, for example writing a blog post for the website and submitting ideas for other departments. Furthermore, there are little touches for example a plentiful supply of fruit to snack on, offers for a coffee or hot chocolate to be made for you and then the big touches, such as organised nights out together and fun social events which we can all get involved in. The team becomes more like family than co-workers, we all get along great and socialise both in and out of work together. I would highly recommend Hunter Dunning to anyone who is happy to work hard but also play harder. Just make sure you are inventive enough to come up with new games for the Monday morning meeting and you are happy to play with the office dog during your breaks.”

John Watson (Architecture Lead)

“I Joined HD just over 3 and half years ago and it was the best move of my working life.

When I joined the company I had no recruitment experience and they helped me develop and progress and now I head up the Architecture team.

The company and especially Joe have really helped me develop and have been super supportive both in and out of work.

It’s the best company I have ever worked for.”

Louise Wilkie (Marketing Manager)

“I came on board with Hunter Dunning at the end of last summer following their interview process. A large part of what made me interested was the excitement and feeling that I could make a difference. That excitement came from not just myself but my interviewers too.

I got a call about half an hour after my interview to make me an offer for second stage and the same after that of an offer of employment. This has stuck with me from the beginning. So many companies make candidates sit and wait for a response which doesn’t really make you feel “wanted”. The team here are great and everyone is approachable and friendly. I think this is due to the company knowing and understanding its own industry and that “cultural fit” is paramount to having the right people in the right job so they snap someone up when they know they are the right person for the job.

What makes me get out of bed is the trust and autonomy I am given. The feeling of being “wanted” and “needed” has never waned. The broadcasting of my successes is humbling and makes me want to keep on giving. It’s not that it’s about ego stroking, anyone can do that, it is the genuine feeling of purpose within the organisation! On top are some great perks – flexible working is important to me with my young family, the training opportunities such as trade shows and time to research and develop are great and the social aspect is just a bonus. Overall, I can comfortably say this is one of the best, most engaged companies I have ever worked for.”

Wish us luck for the upcoming awards!

If you would like to join the team here at Hunter Dunning please email your CV to consult@hunterdunning.co.uk.

See what else we get up to at Hunter Dunning on our blog here.