Accountability, responsiveness, transparency, innovation and collaboration are the five pillars on which the culture of SE2 rests. The acronym, ARTIC, is therefore abundantly used reminding the employees constantly about the organisation’s culture.
SE2 is a US-based company in the insurance tech space with several life and annuity products. Being very bullish about its India counterparts in Gurgaon and Pune, it is investing $10 million each year. With the Gurgaon office having close to 600 employees, the ongoing synergies with the overseas parent company help shape the core culture, based on the ARTIC principle.
Stressing more on creating positive experiences for the entire employee life cycle, the HR at SE2 is churning out initiatives to take employee engagement to the next level. A calendar has been created to keep track of engagement activities on a monthly basis. A theme is planned for each month and all activities follow that theme. “We have themes ranging from sports and field activities, to literary activities such as quizzes,” says Sumit Bhatia, head HR, SE2.
“We analyse whether they are achieving their goals keeping the parameters of ARTIC in sanctity. The behaviours displayed by employees in their everyday work are measured against ARTIC to calculate the culture outcome”
Communication plays a key role in engaging employees. Yammer is the common platform for all to put across their thoughts, viewpoints and broadcast communication.
Rewards and recognition are part of the backbone of the organisation. What better way to recognise the efforts of employees than give them ‘thank you’ cards? These are a source of instant gratification and sometimes deserving employees receive small notes of gratitude from none other than the CEOs.
When employees feel valued, they experience a sense of accomplishment, and research shows that recognition increases employee engagement by 60 per cent. Also, peer to peer recognition is encouraged here so that all employees get an opportunity to show their gratitude, making this a two-way process of giving and receiving at the same time.
Awards for excellence
This awards are given to celebrate success and achievement. At SE2, employees are acknowledged for their roles in making the organisation a success on an everyday basis.
Developing an ARTIC culture
The ARTIC culture plays a key role in the lives of employees at SE2. It is a part of the continuous annual performance cycle and all employees are evaluated on the basis of competencies under the acronym ARTIC. “We analyse whether they are achieving their goals keeping the parameters of ARTIC in sanctity. The behaviours displayed by employees in their everyday work are measured against ARTIC to calculate the culture outcome,” explains Bhatia.
Organisational planning, as well as strategising people business and the way the customers are dealt with, all have strong traces of the ARTIC culture. Team collaboration and responsiveness are leveraged very seriously. That makes sense too, because the employees have to be constantly in touch with the global teams through electronic media. Moreover, timeliness in communication is encouraged amongst the employees.
SE2 employees are encouraged to use video chats and not audio while communicating with the employees at the offices in the US. This way, the Company fosters a culture of collaboration and transparent communication.
The five pillars of the ARTIC culture are engrained in the minds of the people. Free-flowing communication between leadership and employees helps to simplify the principles behind it.
This was the theme for a particular month and these quizzes helped employees showcase their understanding of the ARTIC culture.
As the name suggests, these are informal groups within the organisation that meet regularly for non-work-related activities and discussions. Here, an opportunity is given to the people to enhance their passions beyond work. Certain clubs, focussed on health and wellness, photography and sports emerge from this initiative. The long-lasting effects of these groups go a long way in helping employees achieve work–life balance, by pursuing their hobbies. During these rendezvous sessions, employees decide the theme for each month’s activity calendar.
SE2 is changing the paradigm as far as the contractual workers are concerned. About five per cent of the workforce is contractual, and they always form an important part of all the Company’s activities, such as Fun Family Day or Townhall.
The regular feedback sessions, the opportunity to engage with top leadership and the intra practice dialogues, add to the employees’ perspective, knowledge and growth at SE2.