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Sanlam Certified as a Top Employer for the Ninth Consecutive Year

22 January 2024 Sanlam
Sana-Ullah Bray

Sana-Ullah Bray

Sanlam has been certified as a Top Employer for the ninth consecutive year by the Top Employers Institute, a global authority on recognising excellence in people practices. This prestigious recognition is a testament to Sanlam’s unwavering commitment to providing its employees with a world-class work environment and fostering a culture of growth, leadership, collaboration, and trust. Here, Sanlam advocates for four progressive practices to entrench a solid people-first culture.

“We are incredibly proud to be recognised as a Top Employer for the ninth consecutive year,” says Sana-Ullah Bray, Group Executive: Human Capital at Sanlam. “This recognition is a direct reflection of our dedication to our employees and our commitment to creating a workplace where they can thrive, succeed and live with confidence.”

Sanlam’s strong performance in the Top Employer certification process is driven by its continuous focus on reviewing and improving its people practices. This year, 60% of Sanlam’s scores shifted positively, indicating that the company is making significant progress in aligning its practices with leading standards. Additionally, the group scored ‘full marks’ for Business Strategy, Organisation and Change, Digital HR, Performance, Purpose and Values, and Ethics and Integrity.

“It is important for us to continuously review our people practices to ensure that we are meeting the evolving needs of our employees,” says Bray. “The Top Employer certification process provides us with valuable insights into how we can improve our practices and make our workplace even better.”

Sanlam’s Work Environment score saw the most significant improvement this year, reflecting the company’s efforts to enhance the employee experience in a hybrid work environment. Sanlam also made significant gains in its Offboarding, Sustainability, and Wellbeing scores.

Bray says that Sanlam is committed to listening to its employees and responding to their needs. The company has recently implemented several initiatives to gather employee feedback at more regular intervals and in key moments that matter.

Four progressive people practices that Sanlam has focused on:

1. Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB): Gallup’s 2022 study found that while 84% of polled Chief Human Resources Officers say their companies’ DEIB spend has increased, most employees still report their DEIB needs not being met. To combat this, Sanlam advocates for a deep, deliberate DEIB agenda, pledging to eradicate discrimination, bias and harassment and create an inclusive, equitable environment where every employee feels valued and empowered to bring their best to work. DEIB is a pivotal part of the group’s Winning as One culture, with a focus on:
- Leaders who lead by example and embrace diverse thinking, people and behaviours
- Talent and recruitment practices that advance employees and reflect the diversity of the communities and countries Sanlam operates in
- Policies and practices that embed DEIB
- A flexible workplace that accommodates diverse and changing life situations
- Continuous cultural change, modelled from leadership level. The group’s senior leadership is focusing on sensitisation, diversity of thought and personality, and generational differences

2. Women at work: McKinsey has reported the ‘Great Breakup Trend’ for women for two consecutive years now (2022 and 2023), with director-level women exiting at a higher rate than previous years – and at a notably higher rate than their male contemporaries. Women need to be mentored, nurtured and valued at every level, often particularly during the tricky time of coming back to work post maternity leave. It’s critical that women have a strong voice within a business. The Sanlam Women’s Forum was established to advocate for the group’s female employees with ongoing initiatives to empower and celebrate women and ready candidates for leadership opportunities.

3. Employee wellness: Gallup reported that just 21% of global employees are engaged at work and only 33% are thriving in terms of their overall wellbeing. Happier people are more productive and engaged. A holistic employee wellness offering – spanning emotional, physical and financial support – is therefore crucial. Sanlam offers a comprehensive, digitally enabled wellbeing solution that includes mindfulness workshops, in-office healthcare clinics, financial coaching and more.

4. Hybrid ways of working: Forbes recently found that 98% of polled employees want to work remotely, at least some of the time. Covid-19 changed the game. Sanlam continues to offer flexibility to its team to make the hybrid system a win-win for all stakeholders.

“We recognise that the needs of our employees are constantly changing,” Bray adds, “We are committed to responding to these changes by implementing innovative channels for listening to employee feedback and making changes that will have a positive impact on their lives.”

During these challenging economic times, Sanlam’s Human Capital team has demonstrated unwavering dedication to ensuring that its people practices make a real difference in the lives of its employees. The team has focused on areas such as employee wellbeing, diversity and inclusion, and HR digitalisation to support employees and create a thriving work environment.

“Our employees are our most valuable asset,” says Bray “We will continue to champion progressive people practices that will enable our employees to achieve their full potential and create a great place to work.”

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