Julie Huang Head of human resources, Christie’s Asia
Compared with other large international companies operating in Hong Kong, our health coverage for employees is very competitive. The plan includes an annual physical check-up, and coverage for outpatient treatment, hospitalisation, maternity and dental care for staff and members of their immediate families.
Christie's also has a scheme to allow for flexible work hours. In fact, the programme also entails options for flexibility in other arrangements. For individual cases, this can include working from home or an alternative location, having a reduced work week or even job sharing where that makes sense. In addition, the company provides extended maternity leave of up to six months for staff who decide they would like to spend more time with their newborn babies before returning to work.
We make available a sports allowance to encourage employees to do more regular exercise. Obviously, part of the overall thinking is that our competitive health care scheme and the chance to take advantage of the various flexible work arrangements can also promote health and well-being among staff.
It is often said that great companies start with great people. We believe this is especially true with Christie's. For our business, it is critical to get the right people and retain them, since we are in an industry that has many unique characteristics. Generally, the type of people we need are in short supply. The environment, though, allows for achieving a work-life balance, which helps with recruitment and retention. We continue to pay close attention to staff needs and to address them.
Steve Chow Human resources director, Synergis Holdings
Synergis reviews staff benefits, including health coverage, every year and introduced two new initiatives at the start of this year. The first is a programme to give staff of manager-grade or above an annual health check-up. The maximum claim amount is HK$5,000, ensuring that staff can enjoy a comprehensive and professional check-up. Our office staff can also claim a 100 per cent reimbursement for any outpatient consultation fees if they consult a company doctor. Employees are also entitled to a free dental check-up every year.
Starting this year, we introduced a "two hours late" policy. It applies to managers who have to attend client meetings after standard office hours. Under the programme, they can come to work two hours late the morning after the meeting. That gives them a chance to have breakfast with their family or take their children to school, which usually may not be possible.
We care about the physical health of staff, as well as their psychological health and family life. Our HR department organises outdoor activities every year to which all staff are invited along with family members and friends.
Synergis strongly believes that the quality and commitment of staff is the single most important factor in sustaining a leading market position. We are proud to have successfully built a loyal and happy team.
Overall, we feel their professionalism and commitment will further improve standards in our industry.