Celtic English Academy

2nd April 2020

We recognise the importance of creating a culture that supports and values equality and diversity

Cara Douglas-Jones
Staff Development Officer

Celtic English Academy, established in 2004, is a friendly and welcoming English Language School in the centre of Cardiff.

Employing 45 dedicated employees, the organisation takes pride in offering small class sizes, great teachers and wonderful support staff for speakers of foreign languages experiencing life in Cardiff.

Despite having robust recruitment and performance processes in place, Celtic English signed up for the Agile Nation2 Business Programme for an independent review, to ensure transparency and increase employee engagement.

Celtic English Academy had three main objectives for the programme to assist with:

  1. Provide a culture that embraces diversity, has open channels of communication and provides clear and inclusive support to all employees.
  2. Improve attraction of candidates to opportunities and to review the process for fair and transparent practices within recruitment.
  3. Ensure structured reward and recognition is offered, which is both transparent and inclusive.

Business Diversity

With the guidance from their Client Partner, Celtic English Academy involved their employees in the implementation of their Equality and Diversity Strategy, implementing diversity monitoring and appointing a Diversity Champion.
Representatives from the Academy attended several Business Programme workshops in order to improve their knowledge of areas such as shared parental leave, and how to address gaps in statutory provisions such as workplace carers. As a result, Celtic English Academy made a number of substantial changes such as enhanced parental leave which better reflect their culture and values as an ethical employer.

Recruitment & Selection

With the support from their Client Partner Celtic English Academy reviewed their recruitment practices, looking at how vacancies were advertised in particular, they now ensure employees temporarily out of the business i.e. on maternity leave, are notified about vacancies. Practices like this are known to increase maternity return rates. Celtic English Academy also made subtle changes to their application form and person specifications in line with best practice to ensure inclusion.

Reward & Recognition

Changes to how Celtic English Academy manage their Reward and Recognition has further supported their organisational culture. An anonymous survey captures employee feedback, and an employee newsletter ensures communication across the organisation. Celtic English Academy also allocated a new budget for individual teams to spend how they feel appropriate, plus two company-wide events per year to enhance employees’ feelings of being valued whilst creating an environment that fosters team building.