The Jaguar and Land Rover business has scooped top honours by winning The Investors in People Outstanding Workplace of the Year Award at this year's National Business Awards . The coveted Award was presented before more than 1,200 business leaders, Parliamentarians and other VIPs at a prestigious gala ceremony, hosted by the BBC's Fiona Bruce at London's Grosvenor House Hotel.

Part of Ford's Premier Automotive Group, the Gaydon-based organisation's core activities revolve around the design, manufacture and sale of premium cars and 4x4s. Operating from six UK locations, five in the Midlands and one in Merseyside, the company also has several smaller support organisations around the world.

The company won the Award as a result of its 'Create the Winning Team' (CTWT) policy; a people strategy which has been key in creating a collaborative, performance-focused corporate culture. The judges looked for the organisation which had achieved success through the design and application of an outstanding workplace development strategy. The winner had to show how they planned, implemented and measured the performance of their human resource and how success was recognised and rewarded, while all employees had access to continuous development.

The National Business Awards recognises and rewards excellence, innovation and success. Open to organisations of all sizes and from any industry sector, public or private, the programme allows the best of British businesses to sho wcase their achievements and benchmark their successes against firms and bodies of all types. The combined turnover of entrants this year was £366 billion with a profit of £32 billion while it represented 1.8 million UK employees and 250,000 personnel overseas.

"UK businesses cannot compete on a pure cost basis with some of the emerging international competition, so it's vital that companies like Jaguar and Land Rover capitalise on the inherent value of our brands to deliver unique products and services that command a premium. The strength and heritage of the brands are the source of that uniqueness, but it is our people that bring that to life, turning potential into reality.

"I'm really proud of the innovative and creative work we're doing to fully engage our people in securing a profitable future for these two great British car businesses. This Award is great recognition for the team that conceived and developed our people development strategy - Create the Winning Team - but also for everyone in the business who has played a part in delivering improvements where they really matter, out in the workplace," remarked Geoff Polites, chief executive, Jaguar and Land Rover.

Nicola Clark, director of marketing and communications at Investors in People UK and part of the judging panel said: " The standard of entries this year was fantastic and has proven the high level of dedication British businesses have to providing best practice across their operations. Jaguar and Land Rover is a deserving winner as its business model and approach to fulfilling its responsibilities as an employer surpassed the competition. Their efforts are well worthy of celebration as they are without doubt clearly committed to delivering a first class working environment where teamwork is key."

Published : 13/11/06 Author : Melanie Carter

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