At TMI, we take great pride in fostering a work environment focused on employee empowerment. Our commitment to a culture that everyone can belong to and be excited to be a part of, is more than just a recruitment initiative – it’s part of our DNA as a digital marketing agency. In this case study, we showcase the key values – talent investment, diversity and inclusion, and employee wellbeing – that define our culture, and makes our digital marketing agency a truly exceptional company to work for.
Building a culture of high performance
Not only do we hire exceptional people, but we also provide them with the tools, support and opportunities needed to perform to their greatest potential.
Our employee development programme kicks off on day one through onboarding, during which we build on our new recruits’ knowledge of the functions, processes, and skills required to meet the demands of their role. By offering training from the offset, we are building their awareness of the growth possibilities that exist within our agency.
It’s important for team members to be able to envision where they see themselves within their role in the next couple of years. That’s why, regardless of the level in which they work in our agency, each employee needs to meet a development goal set out in their monthly road map. The development goal is discussed and agreed upon by the employee and their line manager during their performance review.
We encourage our people to people to drive their own development and make discoveries about themselves and their preferences. Each employee has a core specialism, and are required to upskill to a secondary channel function. If they wish, they may complete further training and certifications available to them and branch out into other specialisations.
All TMI employees are expected to upskill to a secondary channel function, with a chance to enhance their skills beyond their core specialialisation through training and certifications. This is a winning formula that ensures that there are no limits to professional growth and opportunities. We want our people to drive their own development and make discoveries about themselves and their preferences.
Through leadership development, we help prepare top performing Account Managers to confidently step into Account Management roles. We have tool kits consisting of courses, reading material, training exercises, and monthly meetings designed by our HR department to upskill Campaign Managers’ client relationship and team management.
We reward the good work and dedication of our own people by promoting first and foremost from within. This approach has proven successful: we are proud to have had a Social Media Specialist bloom into a Display Account Manager who constantly achieved CTRs of 2%+. Similarly, we’ve had an employee who joined us with Search campaign management skills, and within five years advanced to a Key Account Manager looking after performance across the agency.
Improving the quality of working life for our team
For our employees to grow to their full potential, we don’t just invest in development opportunities, but also in a positive and engaging work environment. A space where our people feel safe, happy, productive, and motivated.
When a new hire joins our digital marketing agency, we aim to create the best possible onboarding experience. During the first week, new starters are taken on the tour of the office and introduced to the team. They are then given access to the tools they need, assigned training material, and inducted into the company culture. The starter works closely with a supervisor or mentor who ensures the new hire feels welcomed, comfortable, and informed.
Since the pandemic, we have offered our employees the flexibility to work from home on certain days of the week to accommodate life’s many demands. As a reward for the loyalty of long-term employees, we offer them an additional three leave days after three years and a sabbatical after 10 years.
We believe no matter how big or small, a little pick-me-up goes a long way. As a valued member of our team, everyone at TMI, regardless of how long they’ve been at our company, is eligible for loads of other great perks. These include weekly yoga sessions, performance incentives on Assembly, birthdays off, access to a nap room, meals every other Friday, and social hour at the end of the work week.
Through ICAS, an integrated health and wellness service to companies, we offer employees a support system to help them and their families look after their physical and mental health, deal with emotional and family challenges, and manage financial wellbeing, among other benefits.
We also have a robust support programme in place for employees who aren’t meeting performance expectations. This includes an initial meeting during which underperformance issues are discussed, an action plan incorporating training and mentoring, and regular check-ins / follow-ups to monitor their progress. To provide a specific example: we’ve had an employee who started out as a graduate but failed to meet performance standards after a year. We initiated a six-week performance management programme for which we set objectives, identified goals, provided feedback, and reviewed results. Receiving poor feedback during a performance review wasn’t easy for the employee as it felt like a personal attack. However, she took the initiative to improve. With our continued support and guidance, she was able to bounce back with better performance reviews that led to her being promoted to Campaign Manager, and eventually Account Manager – both positions she has been excelling in.
Everyone feels equally involved and supported in our digital marketing agency
To make sure everyone feels welcomed and empowered, we take diversity and inclusion seriously during our recruitment process. We expand our talent pool by providing opportunities to people who bring a mix of contrasting backgrounds, perspectives, experiences, and ideas to our agency.
50% of new hires are from designated groups
50% of our Business Unit Leaders are women
22% of new promotions happened internally over the last fiscal year
In a recent recruitment drive, ten individuals who were offered employment were from historically disadvantaged groups (50% of new hires). A big focus for us is identifying our previously disadvantaged employees and giving them all the training, tools and support to grow within our organisation and have a clear path for growth. Our yearly Employment Equity plan ensures we are uplifting and elevating our diverse workforce.
We also provide equal advancement of all genders into leadership, with women currently representing 60% of our Business Unit Leaders team.
Another way we promote diversity and inclusion is through our internal mobility strategy. When we have a new position to fill, we always look internally for the ideal candidate with the suitable skills before hiring someone externally. In the last fiscal year, we’ve made the best use of our existing talent pool, promoting 22% of our staff of 44.
With our Graduate & Internship Programme, we upskill individuals who have been fortunate or not fortunate enough to study in South Africa. We supply the training and nurture candidates with our skilled in-house resources as well as assist them in obtaining certain certifications and experience. This strategy supports the community by giving them employment opportunities without having the necessary qualifications to achieving their goals.