PCA Predict engages staff through a tailored approach to benefits

Employee engagement is an important focus for Worcester-based technology firm PCA Predict, and one way it is looking to achieve this is through the use and delivery of employee benefits.

The organisation, which provides address e-commerce validation technology for customers such as Tesco, Dow Jones and Disney, employs more than 55 staff and has offices in New York and Germany, as well as in the UK.

Guy Mucklow, co-founder, says: “We are aiming for 20%-plus growth a year, so trying to keep everyone pulling in the same direction is important.”

This means thinking about benefits in a tailored way rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach. For example, the organisation has an enterprise management incentive (EMI) scheme that gifts up to 10% of equity to employees. But, as Mucklow says: “Our EMI scheme is an incredibly valuable benefit, but it’s not for everyone.

“For example, millennial employees, in my experience, are not necessarily going to value an EMI [scheme] in the same way. They’re going to have more pressing financial needs: getting a mortgage, paying off student debt or loans and so on.”

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The organisation, therefore, offers a staff bonus scheme alongside the EMI, which gives employees the option of a direct cash bonus, shares or a mix of the two. It also offers a range of other employee benefits, including a defined contribution pension scheme, flexible-working arrangements, subsidised gym membership, a bikes-for-work scheme and a range of Bupa-provided healthcare benefits.

Communication that resonates at an individual level is the key to making these benefits work in terms of driving employee engagement, says Mucklow. “If benefits become predictable, if [employees] just expect them rather than appreciate what is being provided, then their value risks being lost,” he adds. “So, this is an important message to be getting right; it is about making things appropriate to the individual.”