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IMB Bank 2016 Illawarra Business of the Year

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Can you tell us how Peoplecare started?
Peoplecare has been part of the Illawarra community since 1953, initially as the health fund for John Lysaght Australia and later BHP.  The employees of John Lysaght Australia wanted to help each other with access to health care for their fellow workers and started the fund in 1953. Since then the organisation has evolved, going from strength to strength as it evolves and adapts to customer needs and the ever-changing nature of our industry environment.

Any advice for business owners getting started?
I’d stress the importance of having a clear vision and plan, together with passion for what you are doing is essential for business success.

What do you see as the major benefits of winning the Illawarra Business Awards?
It was such an honour to have the success we had at the IBC Awards in 2016. The Illawarra is our home and for us it signified that we are making positive contributions to our local economy and community. Our staff consistently hold themselves to the highest possible standard, always striving to deliver the best possible products and services to our members. The extra motivation our success brings cannot be underestimated. When we perform well, our members see the benefits. This makes everyone very happy!

How did the Illawarra Business Awards process help you and your staff reflect on business operations?
At Peoplecare we love our Peoplecarers and have always strived to create a nurturing environment where they can grow and thrive whilst being supported and valued. To be recognised as the Employer of Choice in the Illawarra in 2016 was such an honour and encouragement for us. We are committed to continuing to create industry-leading HR initiatives and practices that create a strong organisation culture and see every Peoplecarer reach their full potential.
 
To be awarded Excellence in Business Ethics in the Illawarra in 2016 was a momentous achievement for us. As a region, many local organisations excel in this area and it is a privilege to be identified as a leader among them. It is a pat on the back for Peoplecare and a fuel to the fire to continue to hold ourselves, our teams and our organisation to the highest possible standards.
 
Winning Excellence in Business in the Illawarra in 2016 was such an honour for our organisation and a significant encouragement for our amazing Peoplecarers. To be recognised as a local leader in business is one of the highest forms of affirmation that will encourage us to continue on our path of excellence.
 
What are your company goals in the next 3-5 years?
At Peoplecare, we believe the key to business growth is to uphold our purpose, which is to facilitate access to affordable health care that positively impacts member’s lives, and to lead the health industry in the provision of exceptional customer service and satisfaction.
 
We continue to adopt a range of underlying strategic initiatives that we categorise into the following key pillars:

  1. A workforce doing great things

  2. A more engaged customer

  3. A better health care experience

  4. A strong, sustainable business

 
The future for Peoplecare is wide-open and incredibly promising, as we continue to hold ourselves to the highest possible standard, consistently deliver excellence and achieve healthy results that are then passed on to our members in many different forms.
 
How do you encourage creative thinking in the work environment?
Peoplecare offers a strong and healthy organisational culture and encouraging creative thinking in the work environment is to create a positive and nurturing work environment where staff feel trusted and supported to embrace new ideas and find solutions. Improving staff engagement can lead to increased motivation to problem solving, creative thinking and ultimately, business success.
 
What is most important to your business? 
As a not-for-profit, member owned health fund, our first and foremost priority is our members. We hold ourselves to a high service standard and measure our performance against benchmarks regularly to ensure we provide excellent service to members.
 
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing business today?
Besides the difficulties of government and regulatory burdens, the major challenges come from business disruption and technology influences and recruiting and retaining the best employees.

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