An Award Winning Culture Explained: A Look into Innovative Employee Solutions

by Feb 6, 2017

Innovative Employee Solutions has an amazing culture! How did a local, San Diego company who offers an Employer of Record payrolling service that most people don’t know exists develop into one of San Diego’s best places to work 9 years running? It’s simple really – Empowered employees, trust and transparency.

Let’s take a quick trip down memory lane. 3 years ago, I was frustrated and unfulfilled in my current role selling credit card processing services in a B2B outside sales environment. One day after work I had an epiphany – I am great at sales and I love doing it, why don’t I forget all of my previous experience and seek out a sales role at a really great company. Who cares what industry they are in, I just want to work for a company who cares about its people and where employees are happy to come to work. The aforementioned SDBJ Best Places to Work list was the first search result in Google and the next thing I knew I was headed down to IES for interview.

Fast forward and I have had 3 amazing years with many accomplishments and growth both personally and professionally and have been able to demolish sales goals and help contribute to big strategy projects along the way. For me, culture is everything, and a conversation with our VP of HR, Tania Fiero, who played a pivotal role in hiring me pulls back the curtain and reveals some of the magic behind IES’ culture.

How did you create such an amazing culture in a niche business that hardly anyone knows exists?

“The IES culture is not created by HR, but rather it grew organically from our employees who feel empowered to add to the culture in any way that they like. HR’s role is to protect the culture, not create it. Our leadership team has a huge role in helping the employees feel empowered to create a culture that they truly love, not one that was designed for them.”

What are some of the key drivers or things that you do to ensure that employees feel this way?

“We have an unprecedented amount of trust. People are generally accepting of one another as human beings and we are 100% transparent with our employees about all aspects of the business. We actively share and talk about our financial standing (good or bad), forward looking strategies, and offer our employees direct access to the leadership team. All of these facets create and build trust amongst our employees. Once trust has been established, empowerment follows and our employees take a lot of pride in the ownership and values of what we have all built together.

What are some of the unique or progressive things that IES is doing from a culture standpoint?

“We completely redesigned our performance management system. All employees have monthly 1 to 1 conversations with their managers and once per year build and Individual Development Plan. This way there are no surprises about goals, objectives, where they stand and where they are headed. We truly want to design a career in partnership with our employees, that asks them where they want to grow, and then we act upon our duty to make the right investments in them to help to get them there. Additionally, collaboration is rampant – We have E.D.I.T. (Employee Driven Innovation Teams) that are made up of cross functional employees who work on big picture, and sometime abstract strategy for the company and present their work to the Leadership Team. This promotes interdepartmental connections with our employees and also allows them opportunities for growth and development working in areas that may not relate to their job role.”

What happens when someone engages in behavior that is outside of your culture (e.g., bullying, not being a team player, not producing, etc)?

These cases are extremely rare in my tenure at IES, however we have always maintained a proactive approach to employee relations. Training and development is something that we take very seriously and continuously seek to level up our managers through a variety of in house and external trainings each year. All managers are trained to handle a variety of scenarios like bullying, that fall outside the scope of what is acceptable in our culture. We also encourage collaboration when seeking to address and/or handle difficult employee relations scenarios. There truly are no cookie cutter instances when it comes to bullying so we train our team to complete full due diligence and investigations before taking any action.

 

Sean Ring is an avid surfer and world traveler, constantly striving to gain knowledge, perspective, and experience from all corners of the globe and from all walks of life. Sean earned a B.S. in Business Administration with an emphasis in International Business from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2005. Sean is currently chair of IES Cares community outreach program and has earned his CCWP (Certified Contingent Workforce Professional) accreditation from Staffing Industry Analysts. Sean was also recognized as a top millennial in the staffing industry by Staffing Industry Review Magazine in 2016. Sean is currently Vice Chair for the ASA (American Staffing Association) Social Responsibility Committee.

Innovative Employee Solutions is a San Diego-based B2B service provider of Employer of Record Payrolling services for their clients nationwide and internationally. IES provides an outsourcing solution for their clients’ contingent or project based workers who they have sourced internally. Contingent self-sourcing strategies have saved companies vast sums of money when compared to using traditional staffing firms.

Do you know how much money chronically bad behavior costs your company? Spoiler alert – it’s a LOT higher than you want it to be. Download our data and worksheet to see how it’s costing your organization and what you can do to fix it.

 

About Catherine Mattice

Catherine Mattice, MA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is President of consulting and training firm, Civility Partners, and has been successfully providing programs in workplace bullying and building positive workplaces since 2007. Her clients include Fortune 500’s, the military, several universities and hospitals, government agencies, small businesses and nonprofits. She has published in a variety of trade magazines and has appeared several times on NPR, FOX, NBC, and ABC as an expert, as well as in USA Today, Inc Magazine, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, and more. Catherine is Past-President of the Association for Talent Development (ATD), San Diego Chapter and teaches at National University. In his book foreword, Ken Blanchard called her book, BACK OFF! Your Kick-Ass Guide to Ending Bullying at Work, “the most comprehensive and valuable handbook on the topic.” She recently released a second book entitled, SEEKING CIVILITY: How Leaders, Managers and HR Can Create a Workplace Free of Bullying.

Your Culture Matters as Much as Your Legal Compliance

Legal compliance serves as the bedrock of any organization. While it lays the foundation, a positive workplace culture breathes life into your organization. A strong, supportive culture fosters employee engagement, boosts morale, and enhances productivity.  This...

How We Create Respectful Work Cultures

For the past 15 years, we have been dedicated to transforming toxic workplace cultures and fostering positive environments through executive coaching, corporate training, and large-scale culture change projects. We’ve serviced over 250 clients and their thousands of...

42% of employees would QUIT over political disagreements

Is it appropriate to restrict employees from expressing their political views at work? On the one hand, you want people to feel free to express themselves. But then, you don't want those water cooler chats to turn into full-blown political showdowns. According to a...

Why Retaining Top Talent is More Difficult Than Ever

Finding and keeping great employees can be tough for companies all over. With changes in employee expectations, advancements in technology, and shifts in the job market, it's a real challenge. In 2019, a whopping 42 million U.S. workers alone said "so long" to their...

Can Your Corporate Culture Influence Workplace Violence?

Workplace violence is a serious concern for organizations worldwide. While there are many reasons why it happens, one thing that doesn't get enough attention is the company culture itself. How people act and treat each other at work can make violence more or less...

How to Utilize Culture Surveys for Cultural Change

Surveys are a wonderful resource for measuring the success of culture change. Many clients approach us with the awareness of a cultural problem…but an inability to identify the cause. And that’s where we step in, often using survey scores as an identifier.  Let’s take...

Microaggressions Can Become Part of an Organization’s Culture. Here’s Why

We're talking a lot about making sure everyone feels included and respected in the workplace. But sometimes, it's not the big, obvious stuff that makes people feel excluded and disrespected - it's the little things. We have likely all experienced situations where...

5 Unfair and Discriminatory Hiring Practices That Go Unnoticed

Businesses that prioritize diversity in their workforce significantly increase the likelihood of fostering creative and innovative thinking among their employees by 150%. Also, companies with a lot of different ethnicities and races in their management team are 35%...

How the Lack of Training Affects your Organization

The workforce is the heart of any thriving company. However, without proper training, employees may find themselves ill-equipped to meet the demands of their roles effectively.  Millennials think learning and growing are important reasons for joining a new company....

Why it’s Getting Harder for Some Women to Report Harassment

The United Nations Women found that about 1 in every 3 women has been sexually harassed at work. 3 out of 4 of them never report it to a manager, HR or anyone else. Imagine a world where every woman is treated with the respect and dignity she deserves. Unfortunately,...