Top Welsh employers and HR professionals have been recognised at the fifth annual Wales HR Awards (Friday, July 8th), which are held annually to shine a spotlight on HR heroes who continue to work hard behind the scenes in businesses of all sizes across Wales.
Leading the charge of businesses recognised for their contribution to HR in 2022 was broadband specialist, Ogi, which won the HR Team of the Year category. The company’s HR Director, Lisa Hand also took the title of HR Director of the Year.
Gower College Swansea and communications agency Freshwater also made their presence known with two award wins each at the event, hosted by Sian Lloyd at Cardiff’s Parkgate Hotel.
Freshwater was named Employer of Choice, and also claimed the award for the Best Response to Covid-19. Gower College Swansea took home the Best Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy title, and Best HR Initiative. The jewel in the HR Awards’ crown – the ‘winner of winners’ award, the HR Star award, was also awarded to Sarah King, Gower College’s HR Director.
Social housing provider Adra were the winner of the Best Staff Wellbeing Strategy category, and they, along with Grŵp Cynefin were the joint winners of the Best Use of the Welsh Language Award. Coaching specialist Choose to Grow was named as the 2022 HR Consultancy of the Year.
Individual success was also enjoyed by Angela Overment at development agency Cwmpas, who was named as this year’s Outstanding HR Professional.
Launched by UK recruiter Acorn and law firm Darwin Gray in partnership with the Wales HR Network, this year’s event was also sponsored by Quantum Advisory, Chwarae Teg, Sweetmans and Partners, Insight HRC, Be Business Fit, Cyfreithwyr.com, Film & Pixel and Choose to Grow as sponsors.
Bernard Ward, Managing Director at Acorn said: “HR continues to have played a crucial role in the continuing development of businesses across Wales who, as employers, have been tasked with ensuring the ongoing wellbeing of their employees whilst also making the most of the opportunities available to them in the post-pandemic world.
“Once again, the standard of entries has been extremely high and they are proof, collectively, that the commitment from Welsh employers in supporting their employees to achieve their greatest potential remains higher than ever. All of this year’s winners and all those shortlisted at the HR Wales Awards have our heartiest congratulations for all they have done, and continue to do, for the profession regionally.”
Darwin Gray’s Managing Partner, Fflur Jones added: “It is fantastic to see the achievements of HR professionals in Wales be recognised in this manner at the Wales HR Awards. We are proud to have established the Wales HR Network and awards alongside Acorn. We work very closely with HR professionals on a daily basis, and understand how unsung their achievements generally are. They often have to perform difficult and sensitive tasks in challenging circumstances, and we truly hope that the prestige of the Wales HR Awards adequately reflects their hard work and commitment to their roles. Huge congratulations to each finalist in each category, and of course to the ultimate winners. It was a fabulous night!”
2022 Wales HR Awards winners
Best Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy
Gower College Swansea
Best HR Initiative (Sponsored by Chwarae Teg)
Gower College Swansea
Best Response – Covid 19
Best Staff Wellbeing Strategy
Best Use of the Welsh Language in HR (Sponsored by Cyfreithwyr.com)
Adra / Grŵp Cynefin
Employer of Choice (sponsored by Be Business Fit)
HR Assistant/Apprentice/Trainee of the Year
Sophie Evans Crunch Digital Media
HR Consultancy of the Year
Choose To Grow
HR Director of the Year
Lisa Hand, Ogi
HR Team of the Year (Sponsored by Choose to Grow)
Outstanding HR Professional of the Year (Sponsored by Quantum Advisory)
Angela Overment (Cwmpas)
HR Star (Sponsored by Acorn and Darwin Gray)
Sarah King, Gower College Swansea