GVC and the bwin.party business acquired in 2016 are now well and truly embedded as one team. Although our business is always changing, expanding and pushing forward, our people have settled into their roles and were a key driver of our growth in 2017.
The acquisition of Ladbrokes Coral on 28 March 2018 has once again transformed the size and shape of the Group’s workforce, taking the number of full-time employees from c.3,000 at the end of 2017 to c.28,000 today. The first priority we have set ourselves is to create an organisation where a unified, dynamic, entrepreneurial approach will enable our talented people to thrive.
We are undertaking a review of the structure of the enlarged Group to identify strengths to build on as well as challenges to address. The Ladbrokes Coral business contained a wealth of talented and experienced professionals, our objective now is ensure we create a working environment in which they can flourish. Inline with the GVC operating philosophy, we will look to streamline our processes to create a culture where entrepreneurism is encouraged and rewarded.
Review of 2017
Looking back at 2017, we have improved our processes on a number for fronts:
As a result of our disposal of the Turkish-facing operations, 125 roles either went with the new owners or left the business. This is never an easy decision, but was essential as part of the disposal and imperative to support our organisation’s strategy and future.
As part of the strategy it was necessary to restructure some of our teams internally. To provide our players with a truly engaging and stimulating experience, we created a new role, Director of Customer Experience & Engagement, Sportsbook, as well as a Marketing Director Casino to oversee all of our casino offerings, enabling us to increase our marketing potency and
drive casino acquisition and CRM best practice across our Casino operations. We also appointed a new Head of Cashcade to help drive our Casino and Bingo brands.
In 2017, we implemented a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. This was the first phase of Evolve, our HR programme, which was launched to streamline and introduce new and efficient procedures to our HR processes. It includes talent acquisition and retention, performance management, development, manager training and succession planning, as well as the day to day employee services
With a business of with thousands of employees across numerous locations, it is vital we keep our people well informed and aware of our business objectives and how they can help deliver them. We believe regular and transparent communication is key to ensuring we have an engaged and motivated workforce.
Channels we utilise to do this include: a Group-wide intranet which is updated on a daily basis; regular webcasts from the CEO, physical ‘town hall’ meetings in our office locations; monthly manager briefs which are cascaded to all employees via their managers; as well as discussion forums. Our Pro Bono and charity events also increase engagement between employees.
Culture and values
Following extensive consultation with our staff, we identified five corporate values which we believe are core to the way in which we operate. They are:
These have now been embedded into the business for 12 months. To encourage the behaviours they represent, we introduced and initiative called ‘The Kudos Club’, which provides a mechanism for individuals to recognise their colleagues, complete challenges related to them and be rewarded for doing so.
In 2017, c.1,000 employees participated in more than 13,000 challenges while over 1,700 employees recognised colleagues on over 14,000 occasions. This has had the effect of increasing employee engagement and enhancing working relationships.