Sodexo Earns Melcrum Award for Engaging Hard-To-Reach Employees

April 05, 2011

Recognized for unique mechanisms that address the challenges of reaching out to employees across thousands of client sites

Sodexo Earns Melcrum Award for Engaging Hard-To-Reach Employees

GAITHERSBURG, Md., April 5, 2011 – Meeting the challenges of engaging more than 120,000 employees working at more than 6,000 separate client sites scattered across the United States has earned Sodexo, the worldwide leader for Quality of Daily Life Solutions, Melcrum's 2011 Employee Engagement Award for the Best Strategy for Engaging Hard to Reach Employees. In 2010, at a time when many companies were experiencing a decline in employee engagement due to the poor economy, Sodexo had an overall five percentage point increase to an already-high level of employee engagement.

The company utilizes a wide range of methods to ensure that employees have knowledge, team spirit and sense of belonging that are necessary to build a highly-engaged workforce.

Sodexo biennially conducts a survey of employee engagement in which all management employees and a sample of our frontline employees are encouraged to participate. The company employs managers and frontline employees who work at client locations or virtually from their home offices, speak many languages and whose job functions do not include the use of computers and email as part of their daily tasks. Sodexo refers to this population as its hard-to-reach workforce. Therefore, in addition to measuring engagement, it has taken a strategic approach to maximizing the engagement of this population. Of the many engagement programs targeted toward these hard-to-reach workforce, some of the most powerful are:

  • Daily Huddles—short, informal meetings at all locations allow employees to discuss activities of the day and managers to emphasize the importance of customer service and safety, reinforcing the mission and values of the company. 
  • Iamsodexo.com—a dedicated website, in both English and Spanish, serves as a central portal to all critical information  providing frontline employees with access an array of company information, such as personal and company-wide benefits, available training, and support resources.
  • Sodexo Employee Connect—provides frontline employees with access to a variety of tools including signing up for training, changing payroll deductions, and other at-work tasks through cutting edge onsite kiosks.
  • Virtual Meetings—bring field managers and support staff together in a time- and cost-effective manner. Virtual meetings are held semi-annually and include presentations from leadership, complete with on-line live discussions with senior company executives and industry experts, e-learning courses, and recognition of outstanding performance. Feedback has shown that Sodexo’s virtual meetings allow more employees to participate and drive engagement higher than face-to-face meetings at a fraction of the cost.
  • Best Practices in Recognition—sharing best practices for recognizing and rewarding employees with all managers. Tips for recognizing accomplishments are discussed in Sodexo’s weekly e-Bulletin and during regional/district conference calls. Satisfaction with recognition increased three percentage points in 2010, and the company continues to identify and share a variety of creative methods for recognizing employees.

These programs and many others demonstrate the company's strategic commitment to ensuring that its hard-to-reach workforce remains engaged and committed to the organization.

About Sodexo

Sodexo in North America
Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexoUSA.com), leading Quality of Daily Life Solutions company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, delivers On Site Service Solutions in Corporate, Education, Health Care, Government, and Remote Site segments, as well as Motivation Solutions such as Esteem Pass. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (www.SodexoFoundation.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $15 million in grants to fight hunger in America. Visit the corporate blog at www.sodexoUSA.com/blog.

Sodexo, world leader in Quality of Daily Life Solutions
Quality of Life plays an important role in the progress of individuals and the performance of organizations. Based on this conviction, Sodexo is the strategic partner for companies and institutions that place a premium on performance and well-being, as it has since Pierre Bellon founded the company in 1966. Sharing the same passion for service, Sodexo's 380,000 employees, in 80 countries design, manage and deliver an unrivaled range of On-site Service Solutions and Motivation Solutions. Sodexo has created a new form of service business that contributes to the economic, social and environmental development of the communities, regions and countries in which it operates and to the fulfillment of its employees.

Key Figures (as of August 31, 2010)

Sodexo in the World 
15.3 billion euro consolidated revenue
380,000 employees
34,000 sites
50 million consumers served daily
80 countries
21st largest employer worldwide

Sodexo in North America
8.0 billion dollars revenue
120,000 employees
10 million consumers served daily
6,000 clients
700 facilities management sites


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