Why we're celebrating Employee Ownership Day

  • James Voûte

On 24th June 2022, we're celebrating EO Day, when thousands of employee-owners, EO businesses and supporters of Employee Ownership come together to raises awareness of the benefits of employee ownership.

There are now more than 1000 UK businesses owned by their employees. Research has shown that employee-owned businesses tend to benefit from higher employee retention and engagement, and are often more productive, more resilient and rooted in their local communities. According to a recent survey from the Employee Ownership Association (of which Haremi is a member), 70% of employee-owned businesses said they saw employee ownership as a socially responsible thing to do, and 77% of those surveyed said ‘making a positive contribution to society and environment’ was part of their purpose.

Haremi was founded in 2006, but we’re just a year into our own employee ownership journey following the sale of the business to an Employee Ownership Trust. This trust holds shares on behalf of all our 50 team members. They haven’t had to spend any of their own money on shares but benefit from their equal shareholding for as long as they work here. Benefits include uncapped annual bonuses linked to company performance. Part of our employee ownership bonus is paid tax-free.

We’ve found the ethos of employee ownership fuses well with our strong company values, particularly ‘Achieving Together’.

Employee ownership is helping us become more people-focussed as a business – it is now run for the benefit of the employees as a whole. We can’t make all the changes we’d like to overnight (we’re still busy delivering learning projects for our customers, after all!) but we’ve already launched an employee-led Business Improvement Forum, an active Employee Social Committee and our new Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) pledges.

All of this is good news for our customers too. They benefit from our continued growth, innovation and a team that’s fully invested, as employee-owners, in delivering an outstanding level of service.

As passionate advocates of employee ownership, we’d be happy to share more of our thoughts, learnings and experiences with anyone who might be considering the model for their own business. Feel free to contact us for a chat.