Guest Blogger Laura Clark observed high levels of engagement during our UK organization's Smarter Travel Week: a week of information and activities aimed at improving our people's business and commuting related environmental footprint as well as health, safety and work/life balance.
In the UK and across much of Northern Europe, it looks like the miserable, wet weather that has caused chaos and anguish is behind us. Finally, the northern hemisphere gets ready to embrace Spring and revel in its sunshine. According to the UK’s Meteorological Office’s calendar, Spring officially begins next week, although we’ve already started to see the flowers blossoming, gorgeous daffodils popping up, and temperatures soaring to the mid-high teens Celsius.
It couldn’t have been timed more perfectly than that, for our UK organization’s Smarter Travel Week campaign has just come to a close. Timed to co-inside with the launch of our new Ride2Work scheme in the UK, this campaign concentrates on cycling, and after months of planning and anticipating what the weather would bring (hoping that we wouldn’t have to endure the cold, harsh snow storms that hit the UK this time last year), we welcome the warm, fresh air and look to encourage our employees to ditch their cars this summer and take up cycling to work.
Capgemini UK has been promoting sustainable travel through our TravelWell programme, our holistic approach to sustainable employee travel, since 2008 when we introduced our five challenging environment objectives to achieve by 2014. Our Smarter Travel Week campaign is all about raising awareness of the various aspects of business and commuter travel, including environmental impact, health, security and the benefits of using the corporate travel agencies, and encouraging the alternatives to business travel and launched successfully globally last year.
This week saw lots of focus and engagement with employees to initiate a sustained reduction of our travel-related carbon emissions, raise awareness of the environmental impact of our business travel and to highlight the investment Capgemini has made in supporting and providing alternatives to travel through increased video conferencing facilities and by providing all employees with the necessary software to make calls through their laptops.
In addition to the various posters, intranet articles, emails and podcasts created for this campaign, many of our UK offices held local road-show style events to engage directly with employees, which was a complete success. Evans Cycles, our Ride2Work scheme provider visited eight of our local offices to showcase some of the bikes and accessories available in the scheme and to encourage the take up of cycling to work.
At our Southbank, Sale, Telford, Bristol and Woking offices, our Smarter Travel Week initiative was further supported by representatives from local councils, who provided employees with local transport information, cycle routes and free cycle maintenance.
I’d like to thank Lambeth Council, South Gloucester Council, Surrey Council, Travel for Greater Manchester, Telford & Wrekin Council and all of the Evans team who supported us this week - the level of engagement we have achieved with our employees this week is incredible and so valuable to us to help increase our employee awareness of our Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability messages around business travel as well as giving us the opportunity to highlight the bike racks, shower and locker facilities and other initiatives already in place across our offices to encourage and allow alternative travel.
Guest blogger Laura Clarke joined Capgemini in September 2012 and has spent the first 12 months of her career at Capgemini in the General Management graduate scheme for Core Services, rotating around the Sustainability, Marketing and Accelerated Solutions Environment teams. Laura has an active passion in sustainable initiatives and change management. She has a BSc in Mathematics and prior to joining Capgemini, spent a year abroad in Asia.