Submitted by Andrew Parr, Managing Director, Student Housing and Hospitality Services
Student Housing & Hospitality Services (SHHS) is a large and diverse group that includes Food Services, Student Housing, Conferences & Accommodations, and Childcare Services. With over 1,700 employees at the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses, employee interaction and recognition across portfolios and effective internal communication can be extremely challenging. In spring 2015 the Outstanding Workplace Committee (OWC) was created to open up more effective internal communications channels and staff recognition opportunities by taking a holistic approach to health and wellbeing in the workplace and help facilitate a positive workplace culture.
The Committee is primarily focused on employee health and wellbeing, employee engagement, internal communication, sustainability awareness and identifying gaps and providing recommendations for workplace improvement, including the very important need for positive recognition and having fun in the workplace.
The OWC creates opportunity for greater staff health, wellness and engagement in two ways:
- by creating SHHS specific events and communiqués, and
- by communicating related on-campus opportunities to all SHHS employees.
Examples of activities that the OWC have organized and launched to date are the SHHS Staff Appreciation Party and Long Service Awards, a joint ice skating party with our colleagues from Athletics and Recreation, Yoga classes, spin classes, blood donor clinics and a Halloween costume contest. Examples of events that the OWC has linked SHHS staff to or created SHHS teams around are the CIBC Run for the Cure, the Vancouver Sun Run, Fair Trade Awareness Week, and Beach cleanup day.
My thanks to all members of the OWC; it truly is this group that is bringing to life the value of such a committee and through their good work we are already seeing tangible improvements to our workplace culture within SHHS.
Check out the Meet the OWC Team poster [pdf].
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