ESPO Award 2018: Associated British Ports

The ESPO Award 2018 will go to the port authority that creates a good workplace environment for its current and future employees and demonstrates its investment in a diverse and inclusive environment, facilitating mutual respect, non-discrimination and personal development.

In the running towards the official Award Ceremony on 7 November 2018, ESPO will be presenting the four projects. The second project is:

Associated British Ports

Associated British Ports Change Programme

ESPO: You are one of the four applicants of this year’s edition of the ESPO Award. Could you briefly describe your project and why it fits into this year’s specific theme, ‘Ports as a Good Work Environment for Everyone’?

In November 2015 we embarked on a change programme to improve the way we work. Our aim was to make measurable progress against each of the six strategic pillars that have been developed to maintain the continual improvement of our services and to visually represent the journey we have embarked on to make our ports better working environments for everyone – employees, neighbours and customers. The strategic pillars are based on the foundation values integrated into everything the business, staff and stakeholders need to do to achieve this vision. The change programme was not a single project, but an alignment of systems and processes across 21 ports.

The six pillars are the following: working safely and sustainably, putting customers first, creating a great place to work, continually improving the operations and services we provide, providing effective infrastructure and equipment, and being good neighbours.

ESPO: How does your project contribute to the societal integration of the port?

The project has contributed to the societal integration of the port through the ‘being good neighbours’ pillar, which has led to various events, including but not limited to: the first ABP Humber Coastal Half Marathon, the 5thanniversary of the ABP Southampton Sailing Academy, which gives young people the opportunity to get out on the water, the 30thanniversary of ABP’s sponsorship of the Welsh National Opera, and the organisation of a parade to mark the 150thanniversary of the Port of Barrow. In addition, the ‘working safely and sustainably’ pillar allowed us to explore new and innovative ways of engaging the workforce such as the introduction of a Safety Coach travelling from port to port to deliver health and safety messages to all staff on the quayside. We also ran a ‘creative kids’ campaign, during which children of staff members were invited to design safety posters to be displayed around the ports.

(c) Associated British Ports

ESPO: Could you describe the original and innovative character of your project?

The project took a holistic approach to engagement and change by extending beyond ABP employees to include employee’s families, other port users and the wider community. Importantly the project was integrated into every part of the business and made central to the way we work. Regular monitoring and review of progress by senior management is central to ensuring we continue to drive the project forward.

ESPO: Why do you think your project deserves to win the ESPO Award 2018?

Winning this prestigious Award would be recognition for the efforts of many people in and around our ports to make ABP a great place to work and be a good member of the community, providing quality employment and working in harmony with the environment. Such recognition would also help keep momentum for the continued integration of our ports into our communities.

(c) Associated British Ports

ESPO: How would you make your experience in developing the project available to other ports?

A key theme of this work has been to ensure we share experiences around our 21 ports and beyond. ABP shares best practice and learning opportunities regularly through industry groups, port user groups and via its web pages and social media. Our involvement in the ESPO Award helps to bring our experiences to a wider audience.

“ABP is committed to maintaining an inclusive and rewarding place to work. We have implemented a range of innovative initiatives to keep our people safe and better informed.”

Henrik Pedersen, CEO of Associated British Ports

Source: ESPO

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