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RANDSTAD: AN OBJECT LESSON IN HOW TO MAKE A MERGER WORK

RANDSTAD: AN OBJECT LESSON IN HOW TO MAKE A MERGER WORK

Worlds second largest recruitment agency secures place amongst Sunday Times Top 100 Best Companies to Work For

By about the fifth page of any internet search, the listed links have wandered way off topic and are utterly irrelevant. But tap merger - staff unhappiness into Google, and by the 950th entry, everythings still acutely focused on that single subject. Which suggests that when two companies merge, one of the most acute difficulties the combined operation will face is engaging staff: engaging them so theyre happy in their work and happy in the newly merged environment.

So what to make of a company which secures a place in The Sunday Times Top 100 Best Companies to Work For list just 18 months after managing one of the biggest ever mergers in the history of its industry sector? It has to be a little bit unusual.

Randstad Staffing is just that. In May 2008, Randstad Employment Bureau merged with Select Appointments as part of a massive global merger between Randstad and Vedior, which created the worlds second largest employment services enterprise, 27,000 employees strong.

It could have been a time of internal meltdown and severe internal tensions between staff and management and different departments. But Randstad made sure it wasnt, which was proved this week when the recently merged company came in at number 63 in the 2009 top 100 Best Companies to Work For table.

Its a real testament to the companys strength and astute management of a far-reaching shift in corporate culture, and a striking testament to the employees dedication to the cause of making their own working world work.

The Sunday Times found that 74% of employees were enthusiastic about the companys future, 78% were confident in the leadership skills of senior management, 76% felt that their management exemplified the organisations values, and 74% reported that their personal efforts are recognised in a company which fosters a great sense of teamwork.

Diane Martyn, CEO of Randstad UK, said Randstad is a people business, with a 50 year heritage. Its absolutely dedicated to finding the right jobs for people and the right candidates for clients. Its about understanding the working environment and shaping the world of work for thousands and thousands of people across five continents. The company drew on all its expertise to manage the merger which (for some businesses) can cause lasting stress and serious commercial strain. Randstad effected a smooth integration because of the support, loyalty and positive attitude fostered by and amongst our employees. Everybody has played a part in winning this award, and Im exceptionally proud of our shared achievement.

The rankings in the Best Company awards are determined by surveys of entrants employees and an organisational survey. The employee survey consists of questions around eight key areas that influence workplace engagement: My Manager, Leadership, My Company, Personal Growth, My Team, Giving something Back, Fair Deal, and Well Being.

The message that emerges from Randstads success is this: Randstad is a company which knows its own business, and which has a unique capacity to exemplify the people-driven values it holds so dear under some of the most trying commercial circumstances any company will ever face.

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