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The Savoy: delivering a 5-star employee reward programme

Published by: LifeWorks,

World renowned luxury hotel, The Savoy, wanted to improve its employee experience in order to increase workforce engagement, staff loyalty and productivity. The objective was to align the experiences of its employees with those offered to the hotel’s elite customer base.

Challenges & Goals

The Savoy’s HR team had historically assessed workforce engagement and satisfaction levels on an annual basis – an exercise that showed a dropping level of engagement. Consequently, the need for a new – and more interactive – solution that would complement existing engagement measurements became increasingly clear.

After internal research by The Savoy team showed that the hotel’s +500-strong workforce was largely made up of millennials or Gen Y employees (70%), establishing a system that would allow for timely and relevant reward and recognition of those key demographics was considered pivotal to success. In particular, the capability to deliver instant, peer-to- peer recognition was cited as a key project goal.

“As you might expect, we experience a high degree of ongoing change in our busy hotel, and LifeWorks’ technology now helps us to better manage our ever-changing employee environment whilst optimising outcomes for the business and ensuring our employees feel valued and appreciated.”Emma Jayne, HR Director, The Savoy


The mobile solution provided by LifeWorks delivered immediate improvement both in how The Savoy communicates with its workforce, and how it recognises and rewards its employees. Available as a native app for iPhone and Android, and as a responsive web solution for all other mobile devices, the tool provides employees with easy access to news, as well as the ability to receive and grant peer-to- peer recognitions. All this at the touch of a button – and from anywhere, at any time.

The Savoy’s new, LifeWorks powered employee app incorporates three key areas of engagement: reward, recognition (both aligned with The Savoy’s company values), and social, which provides access to a centralised newsfeed where employees can view and respond to company updates. Just minutes after the solution was launched, employees were already recognising each other (completely visible via the company’s newsfeed), signifying an immediate endorsement by those who matter most.

To meet the needs and wants of The Savoy’s heavily weighted millennial and Gen Y workforce, a key goal was to ensure the platform was fun and captivating. Gamification elements built into the tool to achieve this have proven highly valuable – not only in terms of capturing employee interest, but also for maintaining it.

LifeWorks worked with The Savoy team to discuss the specific reward requirements of its collective workforce before designing a tailored programme that would offer something for all employees. In particular, restaurant and retail discounts were considered key to success given The Savoy’s majority millennial workforce. The technology not only ensures access to exclusive deals, it also aggregates premium shopping sites to ensure The Savoy’s employees are always presented with the best offers.

To guarantee ease of use, the LifeWorks team provided The Savoy team with ongoing face-to- face assistance and support materials, and has arranged frequent training events throughout the on-boarding process to ensure employees understand the tool’s different functionalities and capabilities.


LifeWorks’ mobile-led engagement solution has significantly improved the way in which employees at The Savoy are able to engage not only with their employer, but also their peers. Employees now have a much higher level of insight around peer-to- peer performance and are able to congratulate and appreciate their colleagues, which has helped to foster a strong culture based on camaraderie and collaboration.

The tangible outcomes to date have been significant, and emphasise the importance of aligning employee programmes with workforce demographics in order to effect greater employee engagement and business reward.

Just 6 months after engaging with LifeWorks, The Savoy’s employee engagement rates rose to a remarkable 93% in late 2015. Other key results nine months post implementation include +3,500 recognitions awarded, with ‘team player’ being the most frequently used; £42k spent on online retail awards; and 80% employee sign up.

“We knew from the outset that we’d need a solution that could meet our specific needs, and LifeWorks was the only provider that could offer what we were looking for. Its solution is scalable and easy-to- use, and above all, is extremely beneficial – just 6 months after implementation, our employee engagement rose to a remarkable 93%.”Emma Jayne, HR Director, The Savoy.

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