We are committed to ensuring that James Fisher is a great place to work

We're doing this by by providing safe and meaningful work, empowering, and supporting our employees to deliver optimal quality for our customers, acknowledging and rewarding employee contribution to the Group’s success, and promoting employee wellbeing. We extend this commitment to our local communities, conscious that our talent pool is fed by the local communities we operate in and that enhancing the lives of people in these communities will deliver benefits for James Fisher as well.

KPI Baseline (2021)  Target  Target date
Employee Engagement Mean (Gallup)  3.6 (5-point scale)  During 2022, we will set clear targets, with the aim to report in 2023
Employee retention rate 78.1%



Why it is important

Our employees are our most important assets. United by a common purpose and shared valued behaviours, their talents, energy, and dedication enable us to create value for all our stakeholders. With James Fisher operations spread across six continents, our people are geographically dispersed and represent a multitude of cultures. While our decentralised and entrepreneurial culture ensures our businesses develop more intimate customer relationships and adapt readily to changes in the markets, regions, and communities where we operate, there is a risk that employees become disconnected from the Group’s leadership and overarching vision. Therefore, we must focus on building a healthy and engaging work environment, prioritising our employees’ wellbeing, career, and personal development to ensure that we get the best out of them and that their efforts are in line with the Group’s growth priorities.

Employee engagement

In prior years, engagement surveys were conducted, collated, and analysed internally by the HR team. In 2021, we outsourced this exercise and introduced the Gallup’s Q12 Employee Engagement Survey. The Gallup approach is tested and tried, and we scored a mean score of 3.6 on a 5-point grading scale. The transparency achieved from the analysis of survey results has empowered managers to take ownership of outcomes and work collaboratively with their teams to improve engagement levels.

To support managers in developing engagement plans and executing initiatives, we nominated and are training engagement champions across the Group.

Inken Braunschmidt, as designated NonExecutive Director for employee engagement, has joined the engagement working group, with employee representatives from around the Group, has presented to employees on the activities of the Board and Committees, and has engaged with employees at the senior management conference and during a number of site visits following the lifting of travel restrictions.

Inken has reported back to the Board on a regular basis on her activities and the key themes communicated by employees.


A healthy workforce is more resourceful, productive, innovative, motivated, and committed. We aim to deliver a physically and mentally healthy workplace within which our employees can thrive. To do this effectively, we have drawn on industry-leading expertise and best practices to design our 2022 wellbeing plan, with emphasis on prioritising preventative measures to address the root cause of existing challenges. This will require extensive education, awareness, training, and sensitisation to encourage employee participation and minimise the risk of associated stigma.

We continued to promote and monitor the uptake of our Employee Assistance Programme and are taking action to increase awareness of the benefits and features, for example, making the programme available to family and friends. We have over 80 trained Mental Health First Aiders (MHFAs) across the Group and are continuing to train more volunteers. We have also set a target to train 50% of the MHFA population in Suicide First Aid by year-end 2022.

Our responsibilities extend beyond our employees to the communities where we live and work. By providing a great place to work and building the communities that support our businesses, we can ensure a sustainable future for James Fisher. To that end, the Group encouraged employees to contribute their time and talents in support of their communities in various capacities, providing financial assistance and sponsorship as needed. For example, James Fisher Group HR team donated supplies and volunteered at a local food bank, to support those facing hardships during the Christmas holiday.

Talent management

To unlock and empower our talent of today and the future, we must invest in attracting and retaining them. This means that our talent management efforts, while focused on our current employees, necessarily extend to potential employees within our communities.

We have revised our talent management policy and are in the process of structuring a Groupwide, global talent management process to guide recruitment, career development and management efforts. We have introduced a new process for Organisational Management Review (OMR), succession planning, performance improvement planning, and for identifying high potential performers. We also designed a new leadership training programme for all managers and rolled out four of the 12 modules.

Group-wide, we executed two six-month internship programmes, providing opportunities for recent graduates whose career prospects had been hampered by the COVID pandemic. While interns gained vital work experience, they in turn injected new energy and fresh ideas into the businesses. In addition, some of our employees got the opportunity to develop core leadership skills as mentors and managers.

As our contribution to the community and to develop future talent for our industries, we have partnered with universities and institutions of learning in various capacities. For example, through our partnership with Engineering UTC Northern Lincolnshire, an England-based university technical college for 14- to 19-year-olds, we created a ‘sponsored classroom’ where budding engineers are taught the importance of engineering in the renewable energy industry.

We also have a business partnership with Meldrum Academy, a secondary school in Scotland.

Apply top-down approach

We believe that managers must lead by example and be strong advocates for our talent initiatives to be successful. Therefore, we will systematically develop and roll out training to educate, raise awareness, empower, sensitise, and coach leaders across the organisation. We will reinforce the importance of healthy team relationships and intervene when people are struggling.

Engage and communicate consistently

To deliver our goal of having an engaged, connected, and committed workforce, we are in the process of restructuring and curating our communication and training campaigns, built around the HR business partners, engagement champions, and wellbeing champions. These campaigns will include:

  • monthly lunch and learns to deep-dive on pertinent topics including health, wellbeing, career, leadership, and community engagement
  • online training workshops, webinars, newsletters, and videos.

We aim to monitor and measure the success of our engagement initiatives by conducting an engagement survey every six months. Analysis of results will enable us to adapt improvement plans in alignment with our objectives and to set clear targets against which our performance is consistently measured.

Upgrade internal learning programmes

An integral part of talent management is learning and development. At James Fisher, our ambition is to create a transformative culture of learning, engage and empower our employees, and continuously improve their proficiency. We are evaluating various learning programmes and talent support mechanisms we believe will help to build top talent:

  • mentoring programme: More senior employees provide career guidance to mentees
  • shadowing programme: Employees shadow colleagues in desired roles to learn about what it entails, and the skills required for success
  • career development toolkit: Help employees own, design, and drive their career progress
  • Begin to build a scalable and efficient delivery model capable of responding effectively to strategic business opportunities, ensuring optimal organisational design with no more than 5 layers from CEO downwards.
  • Continue to create effective recruitment, development and learning opportunities for all employees. We will design and implement a talent management process to ‘grow our own’, setting us on route to our goal of filling 25% of all roles by internal candidates by 2025.
  • Implement actions in response to the employee engagement survey:
  • Detailed results of the engagement survey will be reviewed by Inken Braunschmidt before the key messages are shared with the Board later in the year.
  • Alongside the Group-level results, detailed business-level results are being shared with the managing directors of each business. Each managing director has been asked to respond directly to the employee feedback relevant to its business, and all managing director presentations to the Board in 2021 will include a summary of actions being taken in response to the employee feedback received.
  • Provide further opportunities for direct employee feedback – such as Non-Executive Director Q&A sessions for employees.
  • Appoint a dedicated Learning and Development HR business partner.
  • Continue to strengthen the Group’s approach to diversity and inclusion, utilising the dedicated working group to help build awareness of its importance and to support the implementation of processes focused on promoting diversity in the workplace including through talent attraction, recruitment and STEM initiatives.
  • Foster a culture of continuous improvement, using refinements in our performance management system to create a meritocracy, supporting the highest standards of integrity and delivery.
  • Ensure strong local expertise and talent across all our geographies.
  • Further embed our new Group-wide valued behaviours at all levels of the organisation.
  • Continue building on the success of the Group-wide intranet by increasing opportunities for engagement within the platform.
  • Form a talent management working group in support of the new employee strategy to help unlock and empower the talent of today, tomorrow and the future.