Veolia puts staff engagement to the fore

Making the waste and recycling industry seem a desirable one to work in might present itself as an impossible task, but Veolia Environmental Services is making this happen.

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This year, it won a Marketing Week Engage award in the business to business category for its ’Transforming Waste and Attitudes’ work done with agency IAS B2B Marketing.

It spent just over £300,000 on marketing, including a campaign called ’hand in hand with the environment’ using hand paintings by Italian artist Guido Daniele.

Doing so meant that overall brand awareness went up from 62% to 73% and local authority awareness – a key market for Veolia – went up from 78% to 84%. The health and safety element to the campaign reduced incidents and saved the company £1.5m.

Veolia’s marketing and communications director Kevin Hurst says the award has helped to boost morale.

“The team was delighted. It is really hard getting recognition for a marketing team, because it [the effect of marketing] is hard sometimes to measure. So when someone else thinks you are doing great it is really pleasing.”

Keeping staff happy and energised about the brand was one of the aims of the campaign. Veolia is also using a new intranet site to help make its 12,500 people across 300 sites feel part of one business.

“Our intranet is not corporate, it is like Facebook. We didn’t want it to smack of top-down management beliefs, so the staff developed it and that has been a great way of making it more of a team event.”

Veolia is also extending its sponsorship of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. This year it will support the exhibition nationally rather than just in London, so when it tours the country, more people will be exposed to the brand. Hurst says it also runs a staff photography competition, so they can feel part of the sponsorship.

While this is a high profile campaign, Hurst says the most visible part of the brand is its waste trucks. “We have around 4000 vehicles around the UK, which is one of the largest fleets [of any business].

“We empty the bins, clean the streets, do grounds maintenance in parks, so we are more than the people who empty the bins.”

Think you have implemented a B2B strategy that’s reaped rewards? Then enter the marketing Week Engage Awards 2012 by clicking here.

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