Ensuring the highest quality standards

Routes To Work is always looking to improve the level of service we provide to our clients.

For this reason, we became a member of Quality Scotland in 2013 and have used the principles of the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) since then to guide and manage a range of business improvement projects via our ‘Different & Better’ Action Plan across all areas of the organisation.

The EFQM is the most widely used business excellence framework in Europe. It was overseen by Quality Scotland and is used by over 250 organisations in the public, private and third sectors as an organisation-wide business improvement tool.

Using the EFQM has given Routes To Work a defined, structured and consistent approach to project development, as well as a way to monitor our improvements. In early 2019, we re-engaged with the Quality Scotland Account Director responsible for the third sector to review the options for external assessment in order to progress towards a formal EFQM status.

We agreed three current and added-value improvement projects from our operating plan for 2019/20 that would be developed to achieve validation as a ‘Committed to Excellence’ organisation. ‘Committed to Excellence’ has been designed to help organisations understand their current level of performance and to identify, prioritise, and implement improvement projects.

Between July 2019 and January 2020, Routes To Work progressed these plans with team colleagues at all levels, submitting a report to Quality Scotland for review.

By February 2020, Quality Scotland Assessors had carried out their validation visit at Routes To Work, confirming that we fully met all the criteria of the Committed to Excellence Standard.

We’re delighted to have been awarded this status as at 18 February 2020, and will hold this accreditation for two years. Well done to everyone involved.

Service User Feedback

Routes To Work regularly ask our clients to reflect on their experience with us and comment on how effective our overall service is. We offer our clients an opportunity to provide us with feedback and highlight any areas that we can improve on. This information is collated on a quarterly and annual basis with recommendations for improvements acted upon. There are a range of questions and we have highlighted some of the responses below including client comments:

Do you feel safe & relaxed in our offices?

99% of clients said they were either satisfied or very satisfied

What are our staff like?

95% responded they were good or very good

Do you feel you have progressed in 4 weeks?

96% of clients said they were either satisfied or very satisfied

Satisfied with facilities in our premises?

82% of clients said they were either satisfied or very satisfied

“Fantastic service very reassuring to have- great employees made me feel welcome and understood.”

“Case Worker was fantastic, very helpful and easy to talk to.”

“I would never have found this job without them, thank you so much.”

“The Living Wage is one of a suite of terms & conditions of employment which demonstrates our determination to make our workplace a model of good practice, and we actively advocate its use to all the local employers we come into contact with through our business activities.”

Providing dignity with a living wage

At Routes To Work, we believe in the dignity and motivation of our greatest resource: our staff. That’s why we have become an accredited Living Wage Employer.

We want to ensure that our employees can earn a wage which is enough to live on. In turn this helps towards a healthier local economy – which will benefit us all and is in line with our vision and values.

The Living Wage, which as of November 2019 stands at £9.30 per hour, is one of the most important tools we have in fighting in work poverty in Scotland. Routes To Work is proud to be able to pay higher than the Government minimum. We endorse the philosophy of leading by example and would encourage employers also to pay the living wage.

Routes To Work Chief Executive, Robin Turner, said: “As a charitable organisation who is committed to the reduction of poverty through improving the socio-economic circumstances of those residents of North Lanarkshire who are at greatest risk of disadvantage, we believe we should be leading by example and our commitment to paying the Living Wage is one way we can demonstrate that we do so.

The Living Wage is one of a suite of terms & conditions of employment which demonstrates our determination to make our workplace a model of good practice, and we actively advocate its use to all the local employers we come into contact with through our business activities.”

Why Accredit?

Public Commitment to fair pay

Certified by the Living Wage Foundation

Annual Pay Increases Linked to Cost of Living

We’re the Gold Standard

Routes To Work are committed to excellence and operate as a learning organisation and have been working with the Investors in People (IIP) standard since 2006 to demonstrate these principles. The key themes of the standard are improving, supporting and leading.

“On behalf of the Board of Trustees and staff, I’m delighted that we have been recognised as a gold standard IIP organisation.”

Robin Turner (CEO)

Achieving the IIP standard is an outstanding achievement for any organisation. It signals a culture that puts people at the heart of how an organisation achieves its results. This award benchmarks people management practices against industry best practice and is awarded at different levels.

Routes To Work first achieved this award in 2006 and progressed through the different levels of the standard, achieving silver in 2010 and gold in 2019. This is an outstanding achievement for our business and in turn the service we offer our clients and partners. Only 9% of all IIP accredited organisations are in the third sector and only 16% of all IIP organisations have achieved the Gold standard. In November 2019 we were again assessed against the standard as part of a three-year review cycle. The Assessor identified that innovation was being embraced at all levels and there were several examples of good practice being both consistent and embedded across the organisation. We are committed to being assessed on an annual basis and look forward to maintaining gold status, and even improving our accreditation status at the 3-year stage in Nov 2021.

Routes To Work feels very proud to have achieved this standard of recognition which is in line with our vision and values and is a credit to the commitment of the Board to continually invest in the development of our staff and to all of our staff throughout the organisation for embracing the company value of being a learning organisation. Robin Turner (CEO) said “On behalf of the Board of Trustees and staff, I’m delighted that we have been recognised as a gold standard IIP organisation. At Routes to Work, we are all about investing in the growth & development of the clients we work with and on behalf of and it is tremendously satisfying that we have been seen to take the same approach so successfully with our greatest asset; our staff”

We are proud of the success we have had to date, and we are committed to keeping Routes to Work at the forefront of transforming lives.

Supporting our team through the hardest of times

A terminal illness diagnosis is traumatic enough without considering the impact it has on your employment.

That’s why Routes To Work is proud to be a signatory of the Dying to Work Charter – a TUC initiative through which our employees will be supported, protected and guided throughout their employment following such news.

We recognise that a terminal illness requires support and understanding. By signing this Charter, our colleagues can be secure in the knowledge that we will support them following their diagnosis. Safe and reasonable work can help maintain an employee’s dignity, offer a valuable distraction and can be therapeutic in itself.

Routes To Work supports the TUC’s Dying to Work campaign so that all employees battling terminal illness have adequate employment protection and have their death in service benefits protected for the loved ones they leave behind.

Now we are seventeen!

Routes To Work celebrated its 17th birthday in 2019-20. It has been an exhilarating and life-changing journey for many of our staff as much as the clients we serve, and we’re proud to be a part of it.

Here’s to many more years of helping to transform lives across the North Lanarkshire community.