How flexible working practices help people belong

As Zoom orders more of its staff back to the office, we look at how working practices at CPL One ensure we always support the people who work here – and our clients.

How do you get the most from your working day? Is it by being at your own desk in the office; meeting with your team around a collaboration table; or working quietly at home, on your own? 

Perhaps being productive at work involves a bit of all three. 

At CPL One, we find it depends on the type of work we are doing – and as a full-service agency, the work we do is varied. It could be writing an in-depth feature for a specialist magazine, brainstorming a fresh new design route for a client website or brand revamp, or putting in calls to meet media sales targets.

Whatever work is taking priority, we want everyone here to feel supported in what they do, with the freedom to express themselves and reach their personal goals.

Our purpose at CPL One is to ‘help people belong’, and that applies equally to the people who work here as to our clients and their customers. It means ensuring everyone can:

  • Find the right working environment to develop creative solutions for CPL One clients
  • Feel supported as individuals with their own personal needs and in their careers
  • Come together in teams to maximise the positive difference we can make as a company.

We believe that if you support creativity, individuality and togetherness, you have a much better chance of achieving success.

Hybrid working at CPL One

Like many companies, CPL One operates a hybrid working policy that encourages our teams to work in ways that get the best results. This helps provide a supportive environment – one in which, hopefully, everyone can reach their full potential. 

With a few exceptions, we ask that everyone spends 60 per cent of the working week in the office. Exceptions? Well, some colleagues live only a few minutes’ easy walk away. Others have good reasons not to travel in regularly – our most ‘remote’ team member checks in from the Philippines.

Also, CPL One has offices in two locations – Cambridge and St Albans. We encourage people to work from a different office from time to time, so they can connect with the right people when they are working on specific projects. 

“Team get-togethers can facilitate this,” says director Sarah Simpson. “For example, we’ve recently held training sessions for our sales team, with one session in St Albans and the next in Cambridge.

“Whichever office people work from, we know that being together, as a group, helps to integrate teams – by deepening our understanding of the work and each other – and facilitate the sharing of ideas.”

Different teams have different needs

“For design briefings and collaborating on concept work, face-to-face interaction is still best,” says art director Kevin Reed. “But working from home is a great option when we are deep into day-to-day magazine layout.”

Wherever we work, finding support through the teams of which we are a part is a foundation of what we do, says Sarah.

“Our commercial team is a good example of this. It’s important for them to be around a bank of desks, putting in and answering calls. It brings a sales buzz that you can’t recreate at home. In media sales, building trust and rapport is a priority. We also know how infuriating it can be when key decision-makers at a company are constantly unavailable. So, wherever you work from, being present and available is a must.”

At CPL One, our thinking on hybrid working continues to evolve, and our latest employee opinion survey will help us continue to align our working practices and office environment to meet our teams’ – and our clients’ – needs. 

We think being open to evolution is key. If you want to help people belong, there’s no single or fixed way of achieving it. That’s why, when it comes to the way we work, we always continue to listen, learn and adapt.