PRWeek Asia's Best Places to Work Winners in their own words: Reuter Communications

The Shanghai-based luxury PR specialists were named one of PRWeek Asia's Best Places to Work in the small agency category.

Answers from Chloe Reuter, CEO and founder, pictured below with managing partner Nick Cakebread.

Number of APAC employees: 20

Number and location of APAC offices: 1 office - China. 

How do you ensure your company is competitive in terms of salary and other financial benefits?

We are careful to make sure our salaries are benchmarked against the industry. Every year all team members have their salaries reviewed by myself, our managing partner, and the heads of finance & HR, with direct input from line managers.

The reviews use measurable criteria such as the achievement of agreed KPIs and the team member’s personal and professional development during the review period. During the year there is also an opportunity for bonuses, which are boosted by improvement and performance.

How do you ensure your teams receive the required training?

Our internal training programme includes weekly sessions hosted by our senior team, which all agency staff join. During these sessions, staff also get the chance to talk about their work and share experiences. Team members attend work trips like Paris Fashion Week (AC level and above), receive French lessons each week (an important skill in the luxury industry), and are supported to attend external training.

How do you ensure your staff have a clear career path and help them achieve their personal goals?

Every staff member has a career development plan for achieving both short-term and long-term goals. It is reviewed every six months in a one-to-one with their line manager and includes detailed objectives and goal setting. We have a team support system available at all times for staff of all levels, analysis of areas needing improvement, and tailored mentoring to better foster professional and personal development.

How does your company maintain a good work/life balance?

We offer staff a range of flexible working solutions such as home working, and encourage collaborative work spaces in the office. In addition, staff take part in weekly yoga lessons and French lessons. Each month account managers have a budget for team building activities, and monthly social events for the whole office also take place such as birthday celebrations, wine tasting, Christmas & spring festival parties, and extra days off at Christmas. There is also an annual company outing – last July we took a four-day trip to Moganshan.

How do you ensure your physical workplace environment and atmosphere is an attractive place to work?

The office layout is bright and tastefully decorated, with breakout areas, spacious desks and ergonomic chairs. We hold regular events in the office, from happy hours and staff birthday celebrations to media events, so there are plenty of opportunities to socialise away from your desk. There are deliveries of flowers and fresh fruits several times each week, and a daily cleaning team help make sure everything stays in order!

How does your company effectively communicate with employees?

On Monday mornings we have a whole company meeting to discuss updates, client news and upcoming activities. Throughout the week we also have several work in progress meetings to ensure alignment on all client and agency activities.

We communicate through a weekly newsletter, which includes agency news, campaigns, and interesting industry insights. There are also official WeChat and LinkedIn pages, which are updated throughout the week.

How do you ensure diversity at all levels of the organisation?

We are very proud to have a broad mix of nationalities in the office (China, UK, Luxembourg, Vietnam, Hong Kong, USA, Belgium and Nepal), which brings a range of viewpoints and new perspectives to all our work. We have also achieved a good gender balance, with the office divided almost 50/50 between male and female employees.

This has been the result of an innovative staff recruitment programme implemented by our head of HR. We have also developed strong internship channels with leading educational institutions, helping us to identify the next generation of talent.

If you had to pick the one most important factor for how your company minimises turnover, what would be it be?

We have tried to cultivate a company culture that is welcoming and enjoyable, but at the same time challenging and stimulating. We work with some of the world’s leading luxury and premium brands so everyday holds new, exciting challenges and our team thrive on the high expectations of our clients.

In three words, describe what it is like to work at your company?

Creative, Challenging, Inspiring

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