Distribution Central has scored a spot in the BRW list of Australia’s best employers, coming 21st in a list of 50 companies dominated by the tech sector.
This is the fourth consecutive year the distributor has made the list, thanks to feedback from the company's 115 staff and an independent judging panel.
Managing director Nick Verykios said the company’s unique environment meant workers were eager to join and reluctant to leave.
“It’s a bit left of centre but that’s why it’s a great place to work,” he said. “It’s about creating an environment where people can grow in all aspects of their life.”
DC takes a holistic approach to the workforce, offering staff personal mentoring and counselling, opportunities for philanthropy with personal leave offered for charity work, health improvement through massages, yoga and meditation, and a “funky” working environment to encourage creativity.
Verykios is most proud of the counselling initiative.
"It’s all done by the senior managers including myself,” he said.
“Any one of our 115 staff can come to me - I have a background in crisis counselling and youth counselling, so anyone can sit down with me to discuss how to take their lives further."
“It’s a big part of my job. That’s a focus for me and there’s a huge uptake on it: in fact there’s a waiting list.”
Once a month, DC treats 10 of its staff to “dinner at a nice restaurant”, in which they can discuss future improvements to the workplace, anything from atmosphere and environment to personal growth and development.
“We believe in this world you have to be an incredible innovator or incredible implementer, anything else in between will become redundant,” Verykios said.
"We do a lot of work making sure we can move careers to understanding everything we do has to represent value - something someone can’t do without.”
“It keeps people wanting to come and work for us, and they don’t leave. It’s ingrained into the culture of the organisation.”
Verykios admitted DC’s workplace strategy made the hiring process more difficult.
He told CRN an important aspect of the process was making sure potential workers would fit into the company’s culture.
“If we believe they can benefit from the way we conduct ourselves then we know we’ve got someone that fits,” he said.
“We’ve had some exceptional people in terms of talent, but we’ve worked out together that the culture won’t work for them.”
Distribution Central joined a wave of technology companies filling out the list this year - in fact, tech firms took out eight of the top 10 positions, with Melbourne-based IT services firm OBS taking out first place.
Last year’s winner Google dropped down to third spot behind second NetApp. Also making an appearance were Salesforce.com, Altis Consulting, Atlassian, and services firm Cordelta.
McAfee, Kiandra IT, Juniper Networks, Hitachi Data Sytstem and Check Point all scored spots in the top 50.