5th Apr 2024
3 Min Read

And the winner is…

Alastair Atkinson
Alastair Atkinson
Culture & Insights

What does it take to create an award-winning employer brand? Director of consultancy Alastair Atkinson reveals how our long-term partners, Chivas Brothers, did exactly this and won big at the Culture Pioneers Awards.

Beneath the glitz and glamour of an award ceremony, there’s always some tension; the inevitable question, “Will we win?”, hangs in the air.

Most recently, I was asking that question alongside our long-term client Chivas Brothers – the Scotch whisky makers. I’m delighted to say tension turned to elation when we got our answer: a resounding “Yes!” as the team scooped the Brand title at this year’s Culture Pioneers Awards.

The awards aim to highlight the best workplace cultures and celebrate companies dedicated to ongoing change. The competition is tough, so when the Chivas Brothers name was called out, I was ecstatic.

The Brand award is handed to organisations that are committed to nurturing a working culture that represents their brand identity. So, after spending months helping Chivas Brothers to identify, articulate and communicate a truly authentic employee value proposition (EVP), I had a feeling the team would be in with a fighting chance.

It’s all about your EVP

The Chivas Brothers employer brand goes hand in hand with its world-class EVP, but it took time and energy to put the pieces of the puzzle together.

When the team approached us for help to create the company’s EVP more than a year ago, we knew that, among other things, it was the people that had to shape it. By analysing data from engagement surveys and exit interviews, and gathering colleague insights from listening sessions, we opened a window into their world, shaping an EVP with people front and centre.

The result is a powerful, inspiring statement that gives the Chivas Brothers’ employer brand a voice. It truthfully reflects the company’s commitment to care – for its people, places and planet – and demonstrates how its team is united across geographies, while acknowledging its rich Scottish heritage that’s cherished by colleagues and customers.

What you value the most

Of course, Chivas Brothers’ employee value proposition is built on the values the business holds dear. Before we even embarked on the task of identifying and articulating the EVP, we’d been working alongside the company’s HR and Internal Comms & Culture teams to embed the values, translating them into a behavioural framework that provides clarity and authenticity.

Chivas Brothers had also put a renewed focus on their peer-to-peer recognition programme, which allows colleagues to acknowledge and reward each other for living the values, and they’d provided opportunities for colleagues to explore the nuances of the values at various events and workshops.

This engagement was reflected in the company’s financial performance, with 2023’s full-year results the best in a decade. Clearly, the Culture Pioneers judges agreed these efforts were award-worthy.

An award-winning formula

For many years, Chivas Brothers has known the essence of its employer brand, but, until recently, it hadn’t articulated it. Now, with a clear EVP and its values being brought into sharper focus, colleagues know exactly who they are.

The result has been a strengthening of their consumer brand – giving Scotch fans a clearer picture of the people behind the products, while showing them that the teams making their favourite dram really care about what they do and the environment they do it in.

Much like their Scotch, it’s an award-winning mixture: the perfect blend of people, passion and products.

"Bursting with pride for my Internal Comms & Culture team after they scooped the Culture Pioneers Brand Award with skilled partnership from scarlettabbott. – Louisa Humm, Global Communications and Sustainability Director"
"The team at scarlettabbott led us on a journey to articulate our EVP, and we couldn’t be happier with the result: goosebumps. – Katrina Maheu, Interim Head of Internal Communications and Culture"

If you need help defining your employer brand or surfacing a truly authentic EVP, get in touch.

More on this TopIC

The Point.

The latest thinking from the team, direct to your inbox.
We’d love to hear from you

01904 633 399

AWARDS BADGES Agency Business white

The Old Chapel,
27a Main Street,
YO10 4PJ


The Black & White Building,
74 Rivington Street,

© scarlettabbott 2024 Privacy Notice