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Gold Stevie Award Winner 2018, Click to Enter The 2019 Stevie Awards for Great Employers

Company: Corona Energy, Watford, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
Category: ;Employer of the Year – Utilities

Entry Title: Transforming into a great utilities employer


Back in 2014 Corona Energy’s future looked bleak. Employee satisfaction was low, our customer Net Promoter Score; (NPS) was shocking and to top this off, we were loss-making.

Taking a step back, we realised that our employees held the key to our business success: happy employees would mean happy customers, and there would be a knock-on impact throughout the business.

We operate in an extremely competitive marketplace, so we needed to provide an excellent customer experience to stand out. Our aim was to attract, develop and retain the best talent and engage them at work, so they could deliver this experience.

Our objectives were to:

-Increase employee engagement.
-Increase customer satisfaction.
-Generate a profit.

We underwent a company-wide transformation, looking at each part of the business and developing innovative activities/initiatives that would deliver on our objectives. Key examples include:

Office relocation

We moved to new offices so everyone could work together on one big floor. This allowed us to put a greater focus on our people, which has transformed the way we do business. Appendix-2.

Overhauling Learning & Development (L&D)

We’ve completely overhauled L&D at Corona Energy. The focus has been on putting employees in control of their own development, with the support and guidance of their manager and a coach. Key initiatives include:

· MYCEO – There was a lot that we needed to fix within Corona Energy. Whilst some companies would have asked employees to contribute ideas (we did that too), we decided to take it a step further by making everyone a CEO (figuratively speaking). This has empowered them to own their ideas, seize opportunities and bring them to life. As part of this programme, we challenged each employee to generate £10,000 of revenue. This could be through cost savings, selling new services, etc., all using the new skill set they acquired through L&D. To date, £2m+ of revenue has been generated through this approach.

-Seven Habits – We wanted a set of principles and practices to help everyone structure their approach to making a positive difference every day. Therefore, all employees undertake e-learning in Stephen Covey’s ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’ programme during their induction. Introducing this has resulted in people becoming more effective at work and it’s also had a positive impact on people’s life outside.

-Coaching programme – This programme has matched 50 internal business coaches (including all line
managers) with 200 employees. It’s designed to support employees in their roles and to help them achieve their full potential.

-Corona Business School

Leadership programmes – Covering various topics from business strategy to people leadership, this programme is designed to ensure the leadership team is equipped to support, provide clear direction to and develop their teams. To date, 30% of participants have been promoted to the senior leadership team following the programme.

Technical skills training – On-the-job training follows departmental training plans to ensure everyone has the skills, knowledge and practical tools to carry out their role to an excellent standard.;;;;; Appendix-3.

A concerted effort on employee engagement

We’ve implemented many ways to engage employees throughout their working day including:
Introducing a wellbeing hub.

-Offering private medical benefit.
-Introducing a wellbeing programme which includes free health screening, flu jabs, healthy lunches/breakfasts, etc.
-Introducing ideas days where employees can take time out of the office, researching, exploring and brainstorming ideas to improve Corona Energy – with cash rewards for the best ideas. Appendix-4.
-Offering a benefits package worth c.£6,000/employee/year.
-Putting them in control of their learning through PDPs with the support of line managers through


Our approach over the past year has seen us deliver on all our objectives as well as a host of other achievements. We now have our best employee engagement scores ever, sector-leading customer satisfaction and we’re turning a healthy profit. See next section for more detail and other achievements.

Employer of the Year Summary:

Objective achievements

-We’ve shifted from a very low employee engagement of just 49% to a sector-leading 81%!

-Our customer NPS has shifted 44 points, from -13 to +31. Considering the industry average is typically negative, this is a tremendous result.

-Our profit has gone from loss-making in 2014 to static in 2016 to increasing by 8% in 2017.
Other achievements

-Our turnover has increased by 8%, from £16.2m (2016) to £17.5m (2017).

-In October 2017, we saw our largest customer renewal month at 70%.

-The percentage of excellent reviews on Trustpilot has increased from just 26% to 54%.

-We’re ‘best in class’ for Ofgem complaints.

-Following the introduction of our coaching programme, we’ve seen a fourfold sales lead increase,
contributing to an extra £1m revenue.

-Our employee numbers have grown from 201 (2016) to 210 (2017).

-Our recruitment spend has reduced by 77% (from £220K in 2016 to £50K in 2017).

See appendix-5 for testimonials.

Supporting Document