Impact, performance, purpose – 3 key drivers to attract and retain talent

| September 1, 2017

The ability to successfully recruit and retain the talented individuals needed to drive success is an enduring challenge for medium sized enterprises.


At UHG, we use technology to connect thousands of businesses and healthcare providers. It’s a big job, and meeting the needs of our clients requires some serious application of talent – people with creativity, vision and technical expertise.

Demand for best in breed developers, UX designers and other technical specialists is heated, to say the least, with some of Australia’s largest organisations currently undertaking massive digital transformations.

So what’s the best way for a mid-sized business to compete for the best talent?

Here are three things we’ve found help us stand out as an attractive employer.

Freedom to make an impact

Motivated and ambitious people want to make as big an impact as they can at work.

We empower people to take ownership of problems and drive solutions. Importantly, we also give our staff the opportunity to get involved in all areas of our business and encourage opportunities to further their careers in different parts of our business. Our Incubator enables a process for surfacing ideas for consideration and cross functional teams are assembled for problem solving at all levels of our organisation.

Individualising recognition and rewards

People value different kinds of rewards. We understand that people are motivated by different outcomes.

Beyond ensuring we regularly review salaries against industry benchmarks, we also ask individuals which sort of rewards they prefer. Options include things like a cash bonus, extra time off with family and friends or the chance for additional professional development.

We’ve also learned never to underestimate the value of a heartfelt public thank you. Communication and gratitude are key to our monthly staff event. At UHG, employees are encouraged to stand up to recognise a peer for their contribution. The smiles shared and laughter that erupts at these gatherings is contagious.

Purpose for performance

Individuals are increasingly looking for meaning in their lives, and given the amount of time spent at work, a clear purpose is an essential motivator. Our purpose at UHG is to make it easier for businesses and healthcare providers to transact effectively and achieve better outcomes. Our employees are able to align their future with our purpose through an agile management approach and open communication, enabling a sense of meaningfulness at work.

Interestingly, while we are honoured to recently become a certified B Corporation, one of my proudest moments as a founder was to see our staff choose to run a ‘construct a bike’ competition at our mid-year function with the intent of providing bicycles to under privileged children.

Attracting and retaining talent is an ongoing process, a process our senior management team is always striving to improve. Unfortunately, there is no single solution. It is often during exit interviews when we discover how to do things better. We are continually learning.

Nicky Carp
Nicky has more than two decades’ experience in the healthcare sector, commencing with law firm Philips Fox and then for the past 17 years at UHG, initially overseeing areas including legal, finance, IT and HR teams. Since 2014, Nicky continues to provide legal, financial and strategic input as a board member and chairs the Financial & Risk Committee.

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