We’re all about the people at Assurity Consulting

How our People Experience Initiatives helped Assurity to be shortlisted as a Finalist in the 'Employer of the Year' 2022 Westpac Business Awards!

Aron Chantelau

Aron Chantelau GM, People & Capability

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We’re all about the people at Assurity Consulting

Date: 13 September 2022

Consulting companies are sometimes described as ‘body shops’. At Assurity Consulting, we’re not a body shop but a people business from start to finish. What does that mean in practice? From the very beginning of your career with us, you are treated as an individual and a valued member of our team, with a unique make-up of brilliant people, each bringing unique strengths and capabilities to Assurity. You are surrounded by people who broaden your horizons.

Among the frameworks we’ve put in place which make you feel welcome are an ongoing commitment to learning and development, our focus on people engagement, and even some unusual approaches to recruitment. Across all these initiatives, you’ll find a focus on simple humanity and individuality. After all, while we work with ‘modern technology’ much of the time, we engage with people, and the outputs of our work are always felt by people too – when we contribute to faster, more efficient, better systems and processes, we’re not doing it for the systems and processes, but for those who use them!

Employee Experience Driven by Design

Let’s take a closer look at ‘People-centric design;’. This is one of the key practices you’ll discover in all our lines of business. It’s also something we apply internally, applying design thinking to the employee experience and co-designing the experience with those who ‘live’ it. In practice, that means continual engagement and finding out what’s important to you, what works for you and what doesn’t, and empowering you to make decisions affecting your work experience or removing obstacles in your way.

This is why your work week will typically include time focused on delighting clients whilst also giving you space for connection, growth, and development. We consider this essential because, as a consultant, you’ll spend most of the working week offsite – but we want you to be part of our team, so we encourage and create space for people to connect on a regular basis, share learnings and simply be in great company.

Some of the results of our people-centric design approach are seen in our Christchurch branch. Not only have our people heavily influenced the new office space design (87% of employee suggestions and ideas were implemented!), but they also influenced national approaches to our people experience, including flexible work, growth, and development. The Christchurch office has open workspaces and also open access to people across the business. This underpins collaboration and a shared identity, displaying the Assurity employee vision of ‘brilliant people connected, enabled, and unleashed’. Seeing is believing!

Unique approaches for recruitment

We ‘do’ recruitment and onboarding a little differently in several ways. We’re especially proud of our FreshStart programme, which draws in people looking for a career change from non-traditional backgrounds. We’ve seen amazing results from FreshStart because talent from diverse backgrounds enables greater opportunity for diverse perspectives and, subsequently, innovation, and the problems we work on for our clients are varied and often a little unusual. Accessing a wider talent pool strengthens our business; its diversity of thought and process combines rather neatly with the diversity of culture, ethnicity, and gender.

Of course, we also have a Graduate recruitment initiative welcoming students from any discipline (but especially those studying STEM subjects). Chances are, you came to – or are looking to come to – Assurity through one of these programmes. We are immensely proud of the fact we’ve supported over 200 graduates to start their careers in tech and helped our industry grow in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Something else every new team member notices immediately is their first two days with us are on us. That’s because these days are paid leave!

This unusual approach recognises that you might not have ‘decompression and realignment’ time after leaving your previous job and joining us. We know there’s a lot going on and that ‘no breaks’ employment can be a tough path to walk. We’re thrilled you’re here, so we give you the opportunity for a clear head and a positive welcome into the business.

… and growth

Once on board, you can expect plenty of support. Our dedicated People Leaders provide pastoral care, while direct and personal engagement defines our relationship with you and every staff member. Assignments are made based on opportunities that align with your personal growth objectives and strengths. The goal is aligning what’s best for the client, for you, and for Assurity.

Be assured, too, that your career is in very good hands. We reward performance, and we take note of your progress with quarterly reviews, so you’re promoted straight away for doing a great job. And promotions happen a lot around here, with 43 people moving into new roles which offer the opportunity for more or different responsibilities in the last 12 months (that’s approximately 21% of our people). These reviews are complemented by 6-weekly optional check-ins (dubbed ‘Experience Interviews’), open conversations in which we’ll discuss your views on progress and any challenges or issues. These engagements unearth the ‘little things’ that can make a big difference to your work.

In addition to promotions, we offer cross-branch career development opportunities for those keen to move to another city to work or to cross-train in another job. That’s one of the advantages of a company with a national footprint!

Other structures you’ll find supporting your growth at Assurity are our Capability Framework providing online workshops, the incorporation of Te Ao Māori – the Māori world view – into the business, and a range of professional training courses available for free.

The complete package and the real deal

At Assurity, we don’t just say ‘people are important’. We live it. Our clients aren’t seen as ‘businesses’ but as people. You aren’t seen as ‘providing a skill’. You are seen as an individual. The problems we solve as professionals might involve computers, technology, and processes, but they are experienced and felt by people. That’s what makes Assurity a great place to work for me. And I’m confident it’s what will make Assurity a great place for you to work, too. Welcome aboard!

Keen to unleash your potential as a Graduate, Freshstart, or experienced profesional? Explore the roles we’re hiring for here.

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