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 How Anglian Water Became the UK’s Best Place to Work

How Anglian Water Became the UK’s Best Place to Work

March 13, 2020

It probably won’t come as much of a surprise that Glassdoor recently announced that Google is the number 1 place to work in the UK. Google has built up a reputation for treating their employees exceptionally well, but they also have a big budget to enable them to invest in their people.

Most companies can probably relate better to the achievements of Anglian Water, who won the top award the previous year. With a considerably lower budget than the mighty Google, how did Anglian Water become the UK’s best place to work in 2019?

CEO Peter Simpson gave some insight on what they worked on to develop their culture in an interview at the time:

“We don’t just look for the required skills in our future employees, but also their experience and knowledge too. Just as importantly, we look for people whose behaviors align with our culture and who share the same values as we do as an organisation.”

By looking on their website, it is clear what values they look for in their employees:

  • Professionalism
  • Flexibility
  • Integrity
  • Support
  • Results

So, by developing these values throughout their culture, they have been able to build the type of environment that people enjoy working in.

The CEO also referred to the importance of employees being proud to deliver their work, how they feel they are providing a valuable service by providing safe, clean drinking water and other services.

An interesting factor in the development of the culture at Anglian Water is that over a quarter of their external hires come from employee referrals. Whilst the referrals are not incentivised, the happy employees are keen to get their friends and connections on board to also enjoy working for a company that looks after their employees.


What benefits and perks do employees receive at Anglian Water?

There are a number of benefits that help them to keep their employees happy and motivated, including 23 days holidays that increases with service, flexible working options, discounted water bills and discounted gym membership. Within the employee reviews, several mention that the opportunity of working from home and the sick pay entitlement were important to them.


Learning and development at Anglian Water

Peter Simpson highlighted the company’s approach to learning and development as a significant part in helping to be a good employer. They seem to have a very effective induction program, as well as offering specialist external training, if relevant to the role. Reviews on Glassdoor cited that there are excellent career pathways and progression and that there are side projects for employees to get involved in to help their development.


What employees say about the people at Anglian Water

The Glassdoor reviews include many comments regarding how friendly the people are. There is also glowing praise for CEO Peter Simpson, who is clearly well liked by employees. Lots of people also refer to how management care for both customers and employees.



Since topping Glassdoor’s UK’s Best Place to Work 2019, they have continued to rack up excellent employee reviews (4.5/5). Anglian Water has obviously put a lot of work into developing such a happy, friendly culture and it is no coincidence that the CEO comes across as genuine and relatable to employees. Showing employees that management cares about welfare is so crucial to employee engagement and Anglian Water do this in a number of ways.

They provide benefits that are valued by employees, as well as providing services like counselling. They also know that employees appreciate flexibility and give opportunities such as working from home to help employees manage their work life balance.

As well as these benefits and perks, what really makes Anglian Water stand out from other employers is their commitment to employee development. More companies are now investing in strong career development programs to keep employees engaged and this has clearly been working very well for Anglian Water.