Ricardo Rail's Employee Value Proposition
In capturing the essence of Ricardo Rail’s Employee Value Proposition (EVP), Ford & Stanley facilitated one-to-one discussions with employees at all levels across the UK, to understand what it’s really like to work for Ricardo through the eyes of those who already do. Employees were encouraged to “tell it like it is” as an opportunity to share their views about the company with the outside world.
The feedback we received was overwhelmingly positive with Ricardo Rail described as an exciting and dynamic organisation, with real career prospects and a great people culture. There was a real element of excitement surrounding the future of the business and the opportunity to develop, innovate and expand Ricardo Rail’s service offering.
If you’re looking to join a company who demonstrates a genuine passion for improving the rail industry, with a clear focus on training, development and the opportunity to expand your skills and knowledge, Ricardo Rail may be the right career move for you.
About the company
Ricardo Rail are one of the world’s leading assurance and technical consultancies, supporting the safety, quality and performance of the world’s railway systems.
Formed by the transfer of Lloyd’s Register Rail to Ricardo Plc in July 2015, the business has retained its assurance and technical consultancy services, whilst expanding its capabilities into world-class engineering such as power train and driveline technologies. Innovation is one of the company’s core values, with a key focus in driving new technologies into rail.
The business employs over 500 consultants with offices located worldwide. Within the UK, Ricardo Rail have five key offices based on Pride Park in Derby, close to Paddington station in London and in York, Bristol and Preston. Internationally Ricardo Rail’s operations span Europe and the Middle East, with continued growth forecast.
The company website contains further information regarding Ricardo Rail’s service offering, projects and client portfolio.
The business culture
The feedback we received about the business culture was extremely encouraging. From speaking with new starters to those who had been with the organisation in excess of 15 years, it was echoed throughout the business that Ricardo Rail is a great place to work.
“Ricardo Rail is a really great organisation to work for – the management team are very personable, I enjoy the variety of work and feel trusted and empowered to do the best job I can. There is a lot of good communication across the business that makes you feel valued and appreciated.”
90% of the discussions held were very positive, with employees commenting that their experience of Ricardo Rail to date has surpassed expectation. The business culture was described as friendly, flexible and supportive with a clear understanding of work-life balance. Combined with superb working environments, opportunities for development and a genuine company-wide culture of team work, the overall employee experience was ranked extremely highly. One individual in particular described the workplace as a “home from home,” explaining that she felt real enjoyment in coming to work due to the cooperative and welcoming atmosphere.
Employees feel that the management team are very “in touch with the people”, encourage an open and honest working environment and were consistently described as very approachable.
Through adopting an open approach to discussions at all levels, management are able to listen to ideas, take on employee feedback and gain a good understanding of staff motivations. As a result, employees felt that their opinions were valued and that they are empowered in their work.
“The management team are very approachable and listen to ideas. I feel as though my opinion is valued within the organisation.”
Of course no company is perfect, so reporting on the deltas as well as the positives is important to retain credibility as well as helping potential candidates decide whether to consider Ricardo Rail as a potential career move.
Throughout the integration process from Lloyd’s Register Rail to Ricardo Rail, the company has retained its core values and continued with “business as usual”. However it was noted that as the integration progresses, plans should be communicated more openly across the business so as not to lose focus and to ensure clarity.
Investing in people
On the subject of career development, there were some real first class examples of employee progression within Ricardo Rail. Employee’s feel that management recognise their efforts and are supportive in encouraging opportunities for progression.
“I joined the business two years ago as a Consultant. Since then I’ve progressed into Senior and Service Leader level roles. I’d not previously experienced this level of progression in other organisations.”
The general feeling is that if you have the core skills and willingness to learn, the company will support your aspirations for personal development. Whether this be through professional qualifications, further education or expanding your knowledge into different areas of the business, Ricardo Rail adopt a flexible approach in order to satisfy individual employee needs.
“They recognise potential and work with you in supporting your future with the business.”
One of the key features of working for Ricardo Rail is the variety of projects that employees are able to get involved in. Almost all employees that we spoke to praised the flexibility to work on projects that aligned with their interests, being involved in the entire lifecycle from bidding to delivery.
“I feel I’ve really been listened to in terms of what I’m looking for, the sort of work I’m interested in and I’ve actually been given that sort of work.”
In terms of the type of work available, employees placed a high value on the prestige and ‘standing’ of the projects they were involved with. From large scale infrastructure assignments such as Crossrail, ERTMS and electrification of the UK rail industry to the ability to work with renowned and respected clients, employees were extremely motivated by the variety of work and different challenges available to them.
As a company that is already well-renowned for its leading end design capability, Ricardo Rail are seeking to lever technologies to push the boundaries of engineering and further enhance its service offering.
Reward and recognition
Reward and recognition was another positive subject when speaking with employees. As well as being perceived as very approachable, management are seen to recognise employees through taking time out of their working day to praise individual efforts.
“I’ve never felt the need to leave. The business has always met or exceeded my expectations.”
Comparative to the rest of the rail industry, Ricardo Rail are perceived as offering a good package and benefits scheme. Aside from this, employees felt that the surrounding factors such as the people culture, working environment and development opportunities were just as critical to their employment as being offered a fair salary and benefits package.
Plans for the future
The most exciting opportunities, we feel, surround innovation and technology as part of the wider Ricardo Group. Through integration of the company’s wider engineering capabilities in sectors such as aerospace, automotive and marine, Ricardo Rail are exploring innovative ideas that can be transitioned into alternative industries. As a result the prospects for development of employee skills, knowledge and progressing your career at Ricardo Rail are second to none.
“Ricardo are an organisation who aren’t afraid to take that step forward and invest in innovative ideas. That’s an exciting place to be.”
There is still a long journey ahead for Ricardo Rail, with employees interested to see how this will act as a key differentiator for the business – both from an employee and a client perspective.
Having met with employees at all levels of the business, Ricardo Rail represents the merging of two long-standing legacies for expertise and technical innovation, combined with a strong social conscience. These elements would appear to create an exciting prospect for anyone interested in being involved in major projects, at home or abroad, that will shape the development of the railways of the future.
We met people who are passionate about rail and are excited by the prospect of open innovation across the wider Ricardo Group. In sharing ideas and expertise, this keeps the business at the cutting edge of the rail, automotive and aerospace industries; to deliver value for customers and colleagues alike.
If this appeals to you, please contact Ford & Stanley on +44 (0) 1332 344443 to discuss Ricardo Rail’s latest opportunities.