Co-ops and credit unions make list of world’s most engaged workplaces

Award winners include CO-OP Financial Services, VyStar and SchoolsFirst credit unions and Access Communications Co-op

CO-OP Financial Services is one of several co-op and credit union organisation to be included in the world’s 50 most engaged workplaces by Achievers, a provider of employee voice and recognition solutions.

Achievers president and CEO Jeff Cates said the winners “embody what it means to be a ‘people-first’ business and have proven how the prioritisation of employee experience can help an organisation withstand even the most difficult of times.” 

The awards are now in their tenth year, and receives submissions from around the globe, with a panel of 15 judges comprising employee engagement academics, industry analysts, thought leaders, journalists and influencers.

Winners were selected based on eight criteria –  accountability and performance, belonging, equity and inclusion, culture alignment, manager empowerment, professional and personal growth, purpose and leadership, recognition and rewards, and wellbeing. 

CO-OP Financial Services operates an interbank network connecting the ATMs of credit unions in the United States, along with some locations in Canada and on certain overseas US Navy bases. It is the largest credit union-owned interbank network in the US. 

“I’m incredibly proud of our team,” said president/CEO Todd Clark. “The practice of meaningful employee recognition has become a part of who we are as a company. A lot of time and effort went into this achievement, all during a pandemic no less. Engaged employees are critical to our company’s success and we have many, many overachievers.”  

Also among the winners were VyStar Credit Union of Jacksonville, Florida, and SchoolsFirst FCU of Santa Ana, California.  

“We believe our greatest resource as a credit union is our employees, which makes being part of this prestigious list especially gratifying,” said VyStar president/CEO Brian Wolfburg. “We are committed to providing them with the best our organisation has to offer, and that includes offering industry-leading employee benefits, competitive compensation, growth and development opportunities and more.”

VyStar, which has more than 2,000 employees, recently created VyStar Resource Groups, which focus on groups such as women, minorities, veterans, disabled individuals and the LGBTQ+ community. Through these groups, VyStar employees are empowered to have productive conversations about how to effectively support and advocate for themselves and others.

SchoolsFirst is the largest credit union in California and the USA’s largest credit union serving the educational community, was recently ranked the #1 credit union in California by Forbes.

Canada’s Access Communications Co-op, which provides telecoms and internet services in the Saskatchewan area, also made the list. “Being awarded for our dedication to our employees is a huge honour for everyone at Access,” said HR manager Carole Sauer. “We create a positive and fun environment at Access that empowers and recognises our employees every day for their commitment to our co-operative and the over 230 communities we serve.”

The winners will be honored at a virtual awards gala presented by Achievers on 21 October – which is also International Credit Union Day.