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One Manchester: Creating a Happy And Healthy Organisation

One Manchester’s strategic people priority is to create a happy and healthy organisation to enable them improve people’s lives in their community. The Happiness Index provided the data to drive and inform their Culture and Business Change programmes.

The Challenge


One Manchester are a provider of housing and community services who own and manage more than 12,000 homes and employ 400 people. Their strategic people priority is to create a happy and healthy organisation to enable them to deliver on their mission of improving people’s lives in their community.  


As an Investors in People Gold Award winner, One Manchester already had a culture-of-care that focused on prioritising learning and development of skills for the future. However, when the global Covid-19 pandemic hit they needed to implement a real-time employee listening strategy. 


With the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic we needed to implement a way to stay connected with and listen to our colleagues in real-time and ensure we were able to adapt to meet both the immediate and longer-term needs of our people and our organisation.”

- Rachel Armstrong | Learning & Development Business Partner 


The Solution


One Manchester opened up multiple opportunities to enable their people to engage and share how they were feeling. Daily scrums, CEO drop-in sessions, welfare calls and manager check-in sessions were supplemented with the implementation of a new Colleague Voice platform – allowing employees to feedback on how they were feeling at any time. 


As well as implementing a continuous listening initiative, One Manchester launched their “Shaping Our Future” programme which gathered feedback from their people on how the organisation could best help them prepare for the future of work, and what the future of the organisation should look like. 


The HR and leadership team didn’t just listen – they proactively addressed the feedback and worked together to look at how they could best support people moving forward. As a result of the leadership team being accountable, it helped ensure that people no longer had to raise the same issues, and trusted that they would be addressed and acknowledged. 


Implementing our Colleague Voice platform with The Happiness Index, helped us offer our people a really personal listening experience. It enabled us to immediately identify how our people were thinking and feeling: the good, the bad and the ugly. As an HR and leadership team, it’s incredibly useful to get this insight throughout the year and see how it changes over time, rather than relying on an annual survey that is quickly outdated.

- Rachel Armstrong | Learning & Development Business Partner


The Results


One Manchester achieved a phenomenal 85% engagement with their Shaping Our Future programme and the insight gained helped to drive and inform their Culture Change and broader Business Change programmes.


The main themes that came through for the future were around implementing more flexibility, improving communications and technology platforms, and the need for continued listening.


As well as maintaining their continuous listening programme using the Employee Voice platform, One Manchester will continue to engage with their people to gain insight into key strategic areas such as colleague wellbeing. 


Working with The Happiness Index has helped us cement our culture of care. We’ve managed to forge a stronger emotional connection with each other which has resonated throughout the organisation, and driven our colleagues to go above and beyond even though this has been one of our hardest years.

- Rachel Armstrong | Learning & Development Business Partner


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