AWLP Announces 2013 Work-Life Innovative Excellence Awardees

Jan 22, 2013, 09:30 ET from WorldatWork

Banco Santander, State Street Corp. and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Recognized for Outstanding Work-Life Programs

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., Jan. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- WorldatWork's Alliance for Work-Life Progress (AWLP) is proud to announce the recipients of its 2013 Work-Life Innovative Excellence Award. This year's honorees are Banco Santander, State Street Corp. and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). They will be honored at the Work-Life Awards Gala at the AWLP Work-Life Forum in Baltimore, Md., on Feb. 28, 2013.

Established in 1996, the Work-Life Innovative Excellence Award is the highest honor bestowed by AWLP. It recognizes organizations that have raised the bar on work-life innovation.

Banco Santander's Santander Group City
Banco Santander, a financial institution based in Spain with more than 180,000 employees in its 10 core markets in Europe and the Americas, relocated its headquarters to Boadilla del Monte (10 miles away from Madrid) in 2004 to align its vision of people with its vision of business. Today, Santander Group City is a thriving working community built with work-life balance as the foundation to attract and retain talent. The central space integrates work, health, sports, leisure and residence in the same physical area, currently populated by 6,700 bank employees.

In addition to the standard work-life offerings, Santander Group City offers a growing number of shared services, including:

  • Free daily buses to and from the center of Madrid, 5,000 parking spaces, and subsidized car rental and fuel expenses
  • Financial support for vehicle and housing acquisitions near the center
  • A first-class employer-subsidized nursery with extended hours
  • A state-of-the-art training and development center that features 30 classrooms and an auditorium
  • A medical center that offers medical services during working hours
  • Sport facilities that include a swimming pool, gym and golf courses for employees and their families
  • A wide range of restaurants that provide healthy menus
  • Cultural and volunteering activities
  • Church and commercial facilities (drug store, hairdresser, optician, garage, drycleaner, etc.).

The organizational benefits are numerous, notably 5% lower employee turnover in the Santander Group City compared to other bank offices in Spain; cost savings derived from centrally located shared services; and increasing levels of employee satisfaction, comfort, capacity, competence and commitment.

State Street Corp.'s Manager-Initiated Flex Program
While some companies rely on employees to initiate flexibility, State Street uses a manager-initiated model to promote widespread use of flexible work arrangements. In this manager-initiated approach, managers are provided with a clearly defined, comprehensive tool kit for assessing the feasibility of a job for flexible work arrangements and given technical support for managing issues. They also conduct a self-assessment to gauge how well prepared they are for managing employees who work flexibly, with information to help them feel well prepared. Metrics of flexible work arrangements are kept via State Street's FlexTrax tool, which tracks all requests, approvals and declines. By adopting a manager-initiated approach to flexibility, State Street has found that a manager can achieve greater consistency in the application of flexible work arrangements across the entire global organization. Today, nearly 70% of State Street employees have some type of flexibility in their schedule.

U.S. Department of Agriculture's 'Turbo-Charge Telework' Program
USDA's "Turbo-Charge Telework" education and outreach campaign is a model for telework programs across the U.S. federal government and beyond. It is also helping catapult USDA's workforce culture to the next level by enabling a universal concept and understanding of how telework fits into a flexible and supportive workplace. The campaign consists of monthly webinars in which employees interact with USDA's work-life team to address common concerns and to share success stories involving telework. It also includes a work/Life and wellness online community of practice where employees can access important resources about the telework program and connect with others interested in the same topics. In addition, USDA recognizes "Supervisor Shining Stars" as examples for other supervisors to inspire them to start telework and other work-life programs. USDA aims to enhance its business practices and overall work environment by ensuring it allows maximum participation from all eligible employees, and the goal is to reach 45% of participation in regularly scheduled telework. In fiscal year 2012, USDA had more than 30% of all eligible employees teleworking and an average of 22% teleworkers in any given pay period out of its total eligible population.

About WorldatWork's Alliance for Work-Life Progress®
WorldatWork's Alliance for Work-Life Progress advances work-life as part of an integrated total rewards strategy. This alliance defines and acknowledges best practices and innovation, facilitates dialogue, and elevates work-life thought leadership. Each year, the alliance leads a national awareness initiative celebrating October as National Work and Family Month. Recognizing that work-life encompasses a wide array of programs, the WorldatWork Society of Certified Professionals established the Work-Life Certified Professional (WLCP®) designation in 2007.

Contact: Marcia G. Rhodes, (480) 304-6885,

SOURCE WorldatWork