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PPA Honored for Exemplary Workplace Practices

LANSING – Public Policy Associates, Inc. (PPA) President Jeff Padden knows that talented staff are at their best when they work in an environment that allows them to balance their professional and personal lives.

He has strived to make PPA a flexible workplace where employees can have a high quality of life, grow professionally and academically, and produce high-value work that meets and exceeds clients’ expectations.

PPA is among 23 Michigan employers to win the 2013 Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility.  Only eight in the state have been honored each of the past five years.

“We are very proud to win the Sloan Award again because it shows we are committed to workplace flexibility for the long haul,” Padden said.  “Creating a culture that recognizes and values individuals’ different experiences and needs is critical to us in attracting and retaining very talented people who have choices about where they work.”

The Sloan Award is part of the national When Work Works project administered by Families and Work Institute (FWI) and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).  It recognizes employers who are using flexibility and other worker-friendly strategies to increase business and employee success.

Workplace flexibility—such as flexible work hours, part-time employment and working from home—has been demonstrated to help businesses remain competitive while also benefiting employees.  Flexibility in combination with other aspects of an effective workplace—such as learning opportunities and supervisor support for job success—can have a powerful impact on employee engagement and motivation

PPA allows employees to work flexible hours to take care of children, attend classes, or attend to other personal issues.  One staff member recently worked from New Hampshire for a week so he and his wife could visit family.

Employees also benefit from a tuition reimbursement program that encourages professional development, and they are able to arrange their schedules to make it to class.

The Sloan Awards are unique for their rigorous, two-step selection process, which involves an evaluation of employers’ flexibility programs and practices, and a confidential employee survey on the key ingredients of an effective and flexible workplace.  All applicants are measured against national norms from the National Study of Employers.

“Our research consistently finds that employees in effective and flexible workplaces have greater engagement on the job and greater desire to stay with their organization. In addition, they report lower stress levels and better overall health,” said Ellen Galinsky, FWI president.

“As a recipient of the 2013 Sloan Award, Public Policy Associates ranks among the top 20 percent of employers nationally in terms of its programs, policies and culture for creating an effective and flexible workplace,” Galinsky said.  “In addition, what makes this honor so special is that their employees have corroborated this, affirming that it is indeed an effective and flexible workplace.”

PPA is a Lansing-based consulting firm providing research, evaluation, and strategic planning services that help clients across the country make sound, evidence-based decisions.

When Work Works is a national project to educate the business community on the value of workplace flexibility by sharing research and promising practices, and conducting the annual Sloan Awards.

For more information about the When Work Works initiative and the Alfred P. Sloan Awards for Excellence in Workplace Effectiveness and Flexibility, visit www.whenworkworks.org

Media: For more information, contact PPA President Jeff Padden at paddenjd@publicpolicy.com or 517-485-4477; Eve Tahmincioglu of FWI at eve@familiesandwork.org or 212-465-2044; or Kate Kennedy of SHRM at kate.kennedy@shrm.org or 703-535-6260.